Trevor Lawrence and Justin Herbert will play in their long-awaited first playoff games on Saturday, as the Jacksonville Jaguars will host the Los Angeles Chargers in the AFC wild-card round.
The two teams last met in Week 3, when the Jaguars cruised to a convincing 38-10 road win over the Chargers. Lawrence had his way against the Chargers with three touchdown passes, while Herbert threw one interception and posted a 74.0 passer rating in the contest.
Jaguars head coach Doug Pederson has had a front-row seat to watch Lawrence continue to bounce back from his sluggish rookie campaign. He has also been watching plenty of film on Herbert as of late, and as he touched on during a press conference ahead of the AFC wild-card round, he believes that there are multiple similarities between the former Oregon quarterback and Lawrence.
“They’re very similar, both athletic guys, both can run, extend plays, good vision,” Pederson said. “Obviously, he’s been in these moments before with his team, so he’s got a little experience over Trevor that way. It should be a fun game to watch both of these guys play.”
On the other hand, Chargers head coach Brandon Staley has spent much time in the past days watching film on Lawrence. Staley has noticed one striking difference about Lawrence since the second-year passer’s Week 3 encounter against the Chargers.
“Just more experience; more time on task in their system, more familiarity with their skill group,” Staley said ahead of the game. “Their skill group has been intact the whole season, so him having that chemistry with that skill group. You can tell all of those guys in the skill positions have really improved down the stretch, as well, and featuring what they do well. I think that they have done a good job playing to Trevor’s strengths as a football player. He is the same player that he has been his whole life.
“Coming out of Cartersville, Georgia, he has always been a really good distributor, a guy that is a playmaker, a guy that can play well in the clutch. He is having a great season.”
The Jaguars are looking to pick up a playoff win for the first time since the 2017 season.