Justin Herbert is having a surprisingly good season for his first year in the NFL. The rookie quarterback is making the LA Chargers realize they made the right decision by taking him with the sixth pick in the draft. Herbert may not prepare the same way other top QBs do, though. Some passers, notably Tom Brady, have extremely stringent diets. But Herbert admits to eating two Subway sandwiches every day. Here’s why.
Justin Herbert’s rookie season with the Chargers
The Chargers made veteran Tyrod Taylor the starter to begin the season. But when Taylor suffered a chest injury warming up prior to their Week 2 game Herbert was installed as the starter and has kept the job ever since. That’s because he has thrown for nearly 3,500 yards and 25 touchdowns with a 66.3% completion rate in his first 12 games. Herbert also has three rushing TDs on his tally.
Although Herbert is playing well, it’s not translating into wins for the Chargers, who are 3-9 in his starts. But that’s not his fault because the Chargers have a tendency to lose close games — seven of the nine losses have been by eight points or fewer, representing a single possession difference. Herbert is the front-runner to earn the NFL’s Offensive Rookie of the Year honors.
Herbert’s diet and daily routine
GQ interviewed Herbert, who discussed his diet and how he’s trying to adjust to life in the NFL. He says he gets up around 5 am and gets ready to head out the door to the team facility, about 15-20 minutes from where he lives. Herbert doesn’t eat much in the morning because of his “weak stomach,” but he’ll usually grab a protein bar or two. He lifts for about an hour at 6 am, then has meetings before eating breakfast at mid-morning.
For lunch, he relies on the team‘s catering and whatever is on the menu for that day, typically a sandwich or chicken or rice. Later in the day, he likes to have a fruit smoothie made with Greek yogurt and vanilla whey isolate protein powder. Herbert also stays hydrated throughout the day, drinking five or six bottles. For dinner, he likes to barbecue when he has the time. But when he’s rushed, he needs something quicker.
Subway gets the job done for Justin Herbert
On the way home, Herbert stops by Subway for two sandwiches. The quarterback says his go-to’s are a steak and cheese and chicken bacon ranch. He always gets both on the chain’s Italian herbs and cheese bread. It may not seem like the best dinner for a star athlete. But the quarterback says “it’s been working” for him. Subway is “a good thing to pick up on the way home,” according to the quarterback.
Now that he’s in season, Herbert usually goes to bed shortly after dinner. He gets home around 7:45 pm, takes 15 or 20 minutes to eat, and turns the lights off around 8:10. And that takes some getting used to for the 22-year-old. Like a lot of people recently out of college, Herbert says he is “a night person.” He admits that “waking up early in the morning is not easy for me by any means.”
The rookie realizes it’s part of the job and something that he has to do. He says he’s been practicing it and says getting up early has gotten easier for him over time. But “it’s still not easy at all.”