No more speculation is needed.
As of Tuesday afternoon, head coach Nick Sirianni officially named Jalen Hurts the starting quarterback for the Philadelphia Eagles. The news comes after months of uncertainty.
EAGLES’ QUARTERBACK TIMELINE
Jalen Hurts made his solo quarterback debut during Week 13 last season after the Eagles benched quarterback Carson Wentz. Hurts threw his first career passing touchdown, finishing the game with 109 passing yards. He earned his first NFL start the following week, leading the team to their first victory in five weeks.
Hurts finished the 2020 season with 1,061 passing yards, six touchdowns, and four interceptions.
The Eagles landed themselves in fourth place in the NFC East, concluding one of the worst seasons they’ve played in franchise history.
In the offseason, a “competition” was set into motion between Wentz and Hurts for the starting role in 2021. Shortly after, Philadelphia traded Wentz to the Indianapolis Colts. Despite popular opinion to name Hurts the starter at that time, new head coach Nick Sirianni wanted to maintain the theme of competition throughout the offseason.
Emphasis was then placed on the 2021 NFL Draft and the Eagles’ impending first-round pick. In a position to select Justin Fields or Mac Jones, the Eagles traded down, eventually landing wide receiver DeVonta Smith.
For Hurts, the wait continued. Discussions regarding the Eagles acquiring Texans’ quarterback DeShaun Watson followed. One week later, Philadelphia signed Super Bowl MVP Joe Flacco on March 23 — intended to serve as a back-up, the competition continued.
The Eagles then signed San Francisco 49ers’ quarterback Nick Mullens in June.
Mixed reviews came out of training camp regarding Jalen Hurts. Though he was the only quarterback to take reps with the starters during camp, Sirianni continued to deflect the obvious. The quarterback took ten total snaps this preseason as the team finished 0-2-1.
Three days ago, Philadelphia acquired Gardner Minshew from the Jacksonville Jaguars in exchange for a conditional 2022 sixth-round pick. The team released Nick Mullens.
However, Tuesday, August 31, was the final roster deadline, cutting all NFL teams to 53 players. And with that came the announcement all Philadelphia fans have been waiting for.
Nick Sirianni named second-year quarterback Jalen Hurts as the starter for the upcoming 2021-2022 season. Flacco and Minshew will serve as back-ups.
WITH HARD WORK COMES REWARD
Hurts knew what needed to be done entering the 2021 offseason. He showed dedication on and off the field, gaining the respect of his teammates. Often the last one to leave practice, Hurts has made visible improvements and has created fluidity among the offense.
Nick Sirianni stated, “He [Hurts] did exactly what we wanted him to do.”
Beginning his career at Alabama, Hurts eventually transferred to Oklahoma. The Eagles selected him as a second-round pick in the 2020 NFL Draft. Though his predicted statistics remain uncertain, the Eagles could be looking at their next franchise quarterback if all goes well this season.