Justin Herbert has new teacher in Chargers quarterbacks coach Shane Day
Justin Herbert’s stock soared during the 2020 season, the quarterback going from unproven in the NFL to the league’s top offensive rookie.
Along with Herbert, Pep Hamilton’s reputation also blew up. As the Chargers’ quarterbacks coach, Hamilton was credited with helping Herbert develop into the runaway winner of the NFL’s offensive rookie of the year award.
The job of coaching Herbert in 2021 will belong to Shane Day, whose hiring the Chargers made official Thursday. Day is the passing game coordinator/quarterbacks coach under new head coach Brandon Staley.
He spent the last two seasons as the quarterbacks coach for San Francisco, working under Kyle Shanahan. Day also has coached tight ends and offensive line in the NFL.
“He’s been around one of the premium systems in the NFL with Kyle the last several years,” Staley said. “Just felt like he has a real well-rounded background.”
The Chargers have rebuilt their coaching staff under Staley, who replaced Anthony Lynn following a 7-9 finish. Hamilton has since departed to take a job with the Houston Texans.
Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert, the NFL’s offensive rookie of the year, said he will seek tips from Drew Brees and other veteran quarterbacks.
Staley kept only two coaches from Lynn’s staff — Giff Smith and Dan Shamash.
Smith, entering his sixth season with the Chargers, will continue to coach the defensive line. Shamash will serve as an offensive assistant in his fifth year with the team.
The remainder of Staley’s staff that was announced Thursday:
On offense, Chris Beatty (wide receivers), Derrick Foster (running backs), Kevin Koger (tight ends), Shaun Sarrett (assistant offensive line), Frank Smith (run game coordinator/offensive line) and Chandler Whitmer (quality control).
On defense, Derrick Ansley (secondary), Tom Donatell (assistant secondary), Jay Rodgers (run game coordinator/outside linebackers), Isaac Shewmaker (quality control), John Timu (Alex Spanos coaching fellow) and Michael Wilhoite (linebackers).
On special teams, Mayur Chaudhari (assistant).
Staley already had announced his coordinators. They are Joe Lombardi (offense), Renaldo Hill (defense) and Derius Swinton II (special teams).
Among the more significant changes expected in 2021, the Chargers will be transitioning to a hybrid 3-4 defense that Staley has promised will be multiple and varied, and often won’t resemble a 3-4 at all.
On Thursday, he was asked how Joey Bosa, a three-time Pro Bowl defensive end, will be employed in the new system.
“He’s going to be on the edge of our defense in a playmaking role,” Staley said, before adding that Bosa has the versatility and body type to also play inside.
Staley likened Bosa’s anticipated role to the way Khalil Mack and Aldon Smith, two other noted pass rushers, have been used in the past.
New Chargers coach Brandon Staley credits much of his success to the examples set by his father and mother, even as she eventually passed away from cancer.
“He’s going to play well wherever,” Staley said. “But we’re certainly going to try to put him in his comfort zone, getting him doing what he does really well.”
Staley also indicated that Kenneth Murray Jr., who emerged during his rookie year as a potential star linebacker, is likely to be positioned more inside than on the edge in 2021.
“He’s a guy that’s going to play behind the ball for us, that’s going to be in the middle of our defense ... ,” Staley said. “He’s one of those guys who really has a chance to become a complete linebacker.”
Rounding out the Chargers’ staff, Anthony Lomando will serve as the director of sports performance and Jonathan Brooks as the strength and conditioning coach.
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