If the Los Angeles Chargers made the decision on whether Justin Herbert would play Sunday, they wouldn't risk their franchise quarterback getting hurt even worse. Per ESPN, the Chargers' medical team has "encouraged" Herbert to play the long-sum game in weighing his decision, as his rib cartilage injury can last several weeks to several months.
Herbert is trying to wear a rib protector, put that can't fully protect him when he rotates in a throwing motion. Herbert was limited in Wednesday and Thursday's practice for the Chargers with the rib injury and did not practice Friday. He's a true game-time decision for Sunday's game against the Jacksonville Jaguars.
If Herbert plays, he will be taking a pain injection with the assistance of an ultrasound imaging monitor so the doctor can hit the weak spot at the right part of his body. Herbert did take the injection on Thursday and had mixed results at practice, according to ESPN.
If Herbert can not play, Chase Daniel will get the start for the Chargers.
Daniel has made just five starts in his 13-year career as a backup quarterback -- and none since 2019. He has completed 68.2% of his passes for 1,694 yards with eight touchdowns to seven interceptions (85.0 rating) while just attempting 261 passes in his career.
Whether Herbert plays Sunday or not will be up to him, but the Chargers realize the season is 17 games. If Herbert plays, it's fair to assume he will be in a lot of pain and could aggravate the injury.