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'Buckle Up': NFL World Ready for Jim Harbaugh's Return


John Harbaugh had a message for the NFL when asked Tuesday about his brother, Jim, being the new Chargers Head Coach.

"Buckle up," John Harbaugh said.

John Harbaugh spent the first few minutes of his press conference answering questions about Jim's return to the NFL rather than his own team.

Not that he minded, as he showed a genuine enthusiasm for having his brother back in the league.

"He's gonna do great. We've been together the last couple days," John Harbaugh said. "He's fired up, enthusiastic, talking to players, he knows a lot of these guys. It's been fun.

He later added: "I think he's excited about this. I think he's really excited about the Chargers. I think he's excited about the family. He goes way back. He's got great relationships there. Everybody in the building, I think he's starting to build relationships, [has] guys he's brought over he knows. He's got comfortable with that, loves the quarterback."

Speaking of that quarterback, Justin Herbert weighed in on Jim Harbaugh's hire Tuesday on a podcast.

"He's a competitor, he wants to win and I'm really excited to play for him," Herbert said.

The Harbaugh brothers have some football crossover of late, especially in the coaching ranks.

Chargers Defensive Coordinator was with John Harbaugh and the Ravens before joining Jim Harbaugh's staff at Michigan. Minter then followed Jim Harbaugh to the Bolts.

John Harbaugh said the football conversations between the two might be a tad different now that they are in the same conference.

"Jim and I share a lot of conversations about a lot of things," John Harbaugh said. "Most of it's not football-related, obviously, just like with your family. But a lot of it has been football-related because he's been at Michigan.

"That's definitely going to be different, like it was when he was in San Francisco. There's things we'll talk about," Harbaugh added. "And we're definitely going to continue to be brothers. We're going to try to -- we're just going to be brothers. You have to look at it that way. But we are going to be competitors, too, but it probably changes a little bit."

The Harbaugh brothers weren't the only Chargers-Ravens connection on display Tuesday at the Combine.

Chargers General Manager Joe Hortiz spent the past 26 seasons in Baltimore, all of which were alongside current Ravens General Manager Eric DeCosta in various roles.

DeCosta brought up Hortiz's name unprompted at his Tuesday podium session.

"We haven't lost a lot of people over the years in scouting. We lost Joe Hortiz this year, a great friend of mine," DeCosta said. "Just went to become the GM of the L.A. Chargers.

"For 25 years, Joe has sat to my right, so I'm going to miss him this year. There'll be a void," DeCosta added. later asked DeCosta specifically what he will miss about working with Hortiz.

"Oh, man. Well, Joe is just one of my best friends," DeCosta said. "I think Joe started in 1998, and I was an office guy and a young scout and took Joe under my wing, and we did a lot of stuff together.

"Our kids went to school together; he was my pickleball partner; sat next to me during the draft; helped me over the years, run the meetings and assess talent," DeCosta continued. "Joe has got a great eye for talent. He'll do an amazing job as an evaluator for the Chargers.

"He's got good opinions, he's a consensus builder. The scouts are going to love him," DeCosta added. "The coaches are going to love working with him, and he's going to do a fantastic job."

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