Justin Herbert trade rumors are the stupidest NFL-related thing on the internet

As much as we'd like to see the Chargers without Justin Herbert under center...
Los Angeles Chargers v Denver Broncos
Los Angeles Chargers v Denver Broncos / Justin Edmonds/GettyImages

For your sake—or the sake of the faint glimmer of hope you might have when first seeing it—we hope you read this before you read any rumors or buzz around Justin Herbert. That's because some people are sharing the idea that he could or will be traded this spring by the Los Angeles Chargers, and you should know (if you don't already) that such posts are the dumbest thing on the internet today.

Let's just be clear: the Chargers are not trading Justin Herbert.

That sounds insane to even have to write it, but that hasn't stopped some word from spreading on Twitter on Sunday. Let's sort through what's going on.

As much as we'd like to see the Chargers without Justin Herbert under center, the latest buzz on the internet is as dumb as anything you'll hear this week.

An account closing in on 100K followers called CTESPN which apparently involves Antonio Brown in some form is "reporting" via a "source" that Justin Herbert will head to the Minnesota Vikings in blockbuster pre-draft trade that will feature defensive lineman Christian Darrisaw, a recent first-round pick himself, along with two first-rounders this year and a future second-round pick.

Let's show a couple of posts just to serve as our exhibit for this Idiot Fair that we're apparently presenting at.

What takes this from somebody who is both bored and high posting on the internet to greater circulation of such posted inanity are people like the following:

"At least it's interesting food for thought," is the closing defense there. Uh, no it isn't. It's not interesting and it's not "food for thought." Food for thought are things a person should actually spend time pondering, asking themselves what possible application it might have for their examined life. This is the sort of nonsense spewed in a stupor, where one wakes up and asks, "Wait, I said what?"

I hate that we even have to walk through this, but we're here to serve.

The Chargers are never trading Justin Herbert in 2024 for the same reasons why the Chiefs would never trade Patrick Mahomes in 2024, just on a slightly smaller scale.

No matter how promising this year's quarterback class might look, each and every one of them is unproven and the number of franchise quarterbacks in the league is still far less than most teams (and fan bases) would like to see. Herbert is still a top 5-6 quarterback in the NFL who has been coached by idiots and yet has still given Mahomes and the Chiefs a real run for their money in most matchups.

Beyond the base rule that no team would ever trade a franchise QB in his prime, the truth is that the reported return here is abysmal. Two first round picks and a future second with Darrisaw? Neither first-round pick is even a top 10 selection. The Panthers just traded two firsts, two seconds, and a Pro Bowl WR to move up 8 spots to grab an unproven QB at No. 1 overall in 2023. In this instance, the Vikings would likely need to add another 3 first round picks to make the Chargers think about it.

Then there's the money. Herbert signed a five-year, $262.5 million deal last summer that still hasn't kicked in (he has a $19M cap hit this year). To trade him would cost the Chargers an incredible $129M in dead cap space. Now, George Paton might shrug at that and ask, "What's the big deal?" but smarter people seem to be running the Bolts these days.

Jim Harbaugh might be new to the Bolts, but he's not new to the National Football League. He knows the value of a truly great quarterback and he's got one in Justin Herbert. There might be some adjusting to one another and the Vikings might very well put in a call to at least ask—can't hurt, right?—but no one in L.A. is entertaining that thought.

The AFC West might sound nice without the only other proven quarterback within it but all of this is as reliable as the Chargers medical/training staff.