The Los Angeles Chargers have begun a new era under head coach Jim Harbaugh. LA is in for a long-term retool as the team tries to balance their salary cap and add more young talent. Harbaugh is clearly enamored with his the team's best player, franchise QB Justin Herbert.

Harbaugh spoke glowingly about Herbert in a recent interview with Jahleel Addae.

“He's gonna get mad at me because he's got a lot of humility for somebody who is so incredible,” Harbaugh began. “Ever since I was a kid I just watch other QBs… and I'm watching them, I'm evaluating them. Can I beat this person out? Where can I get better?”

“There's not a gene in his body I wouldn't trade with, immediately,” Harbaugh declared. “He's incredible.”

That is strong praise coming from Harbaugh. Herbert is obviously a much younger man, so on some level it makes sense that Harbaugh would trade bodies with him. However, the context he gave about comparing himself to other QBs makes it seem like Harbaugh is comparing a younger version of himself to Herbert.

Regardless, the Chargers' head coach is pleased to have Herbert on the team for the foreseeable future. Harbaugh also praised Herbert's mental abilities as a QB.

“He's had three (offensive) coordinators in the last three years,” Harbaugh said. “But he's picked up his system better than almost all of the coaches except (offensive coordinator) Greg Roman…”

Harbaugh also praised former 49ers QB Colin Kaepernick, using the same self-comparison criteria he used for Justin Herbert.

“When I worked Colin Kaepernick out when he was coming out of Nevada, I was like ‘I want him on our team' because I know I'd have a hard time beating out Colin Kaepernick,” Harbaugh said.

Harbaugh coached Kaepernick for several years in San Francisco.

Jim Harbaugh reveals LA's ‘incredible edge' in recent interview

Apr 2, 2024; Costa Mesa, CA, USA; Los Angeles Chargers coach Jim Harbaugh speaks at press conference at Hoag Performance Center. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
© Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Jim Harbaugh is known for his fiery attitude and whimsical coaching phrases. He is trying to instill that same fiery attitude into the team culture in LA.

In a recent interview with KCAL News' Chris Hayre, Harbaugh was visibly excited to talk about how hard his team has been competing during OTAs.

“So far, it’s just been great with the team,” Harbaugh said.“ We’ve just been working, chipping away, really every day [for] about nine straight weeks with the fellas, practically perfect attendance. I think that’s an incredible edge that we have, the way our guys are working in the offseason, and if we keep that going, that edge is going to continue to grow.”

While it is still early in the summer, it is encouraging to hear these reports from Harbaugh. The Chargers will need to get the most out of a depleted roster if they want to have success in the near future.

“We want to work hard and have fun doing it. Competitors are welcome in that equation,” Harbaugh said.

This will be an interesting story to track throughout the 2024 season. If Harbaugh can install a new culture in LA that elevates the level of play from all positions, then there's no telling how successful the team may become.