Justin Herbert is not expected to play when the Los Angeles Chargers face the Las Vegas Raiders on Thursday, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported Monday.
The fourth-year quarterback fractured the index finger on his right, throwing hand and is undergoing testing, Chargers head coach Brandon Staley told reporters. Herbert is expected to meet with two hand specialists Monday, and after their reviews, Los Angeles will make a final call.
In the second quarter of the Chargers’ 24-7 loss to the Denver Broncos, Herbert completed a pass to tight end Donald Parham Jr. As Herbert made the throw, he was hit by Broncos defensive end Zach Allen.
The signal-caller remained in the game for the series, but went to the sideline and eventually the locker room. Herbert did not return to the game, and Easton Stick was inserted.
Herbert has yet to miss a start (62) in his NFL career, and he owns the second-longest active streak by a quarterback. Only Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen, who has started 84 consecutive games, has played more.
“All of our focus has got to be on his future,” Staley said. “Certainly, there’s nothing more important than that, than his right hand. And his long-term future. He’s 25 years old and he’s got a really, really bright future in front of him. So, like I said, every decision we make is going to be with that in mind.”
This is the second time this year that Herbert has sustained a fractured finger. In Week 4, against the Raiders, he fractured his middle finger on his left hand while trying to make a tackle following an interception.
Herbert has been playing without a splint for less than a month. In Week 11, he needed to use a splint against the Green Bay Packers, because the injury was irritated during that game. Against Denver, though, Herbert was playing with only tape on his fingers.
— Los Angeles Chargers (@chargers) December 11, 2023
The 5-8 Chargers will likely turn to Stick during the short week. The 2019 fifth-round pick engineered the lone touchdown drive of the game for Los Angeles and finished with 179 yards on 13-of-24 passing.