A corporation can do the whole lot proper throughout a rebuild: Rent , younger coach, make shrewd, sensible personnel selections, lead the NFL in dashing, make the playoffs. These are all indicators of a crew trending upward.
Nonetheless, in the event you have been to peruse Philly information shops, you’d assume Jalen Hurts was Ryan Fitzpatrick or Alex Smith — a shrug-inducing quarterback whose limitations are evident, fairly than a second-year starter who has but to achieve his ceiling. Whereas I’m not saying there’s a Patrick Mahomes-ian model of Hurts ready to be unleashed with the fitting teaching employees, he could possibly be a serviceable starter able to successful the NFC East and, by rule, making the playoffs.
Hurts’ passing stats don’t elicit saliva from followers, ending the 2021-22 season with 3,100-plus yards on 61 % accuracy, 16 touchdowns, and 9 interceptions. There can be extra slobber on his scrambling/dashing outputs — 784 yards and 10 dashing TDs — in the event that they got here in a Lamar Jackson-type style. I point out Jackson as a result of Hurts truly ran for extra yards than the Baltimore quarterback final yr (767). Granted, the ultimate margin was solely 17 yards, and Hurts performed three extra video games than Jackson, the Eagles’ QB nonetheless had eight extra dashing scores than Jackson.
Whenever you consider the 2019 NFL MVP has by no means thrown for 3,144 yards in a season like Hurts did throughout his one yr behind heart, the noise popping out of Eagles’ coaching camp is somewhat unwarranted. It’s not shocking — that is Philly, whose followers have pelted Santa with snowballs and thrown batteries at J.D. Drew, we’re speaking about — however new receiver addition AJ Brown ought to be studying his routes, not deflecting strays aimed toward his QB.
Derrick Gunn, an NFL reporter based mostly in Philadelphia and plugged in with the franchise, provided up a less-than-sterling account of a apply sequence that includes Harm this offseason that was relayed to him secondhand.
“One particular person stated, ‘Let me simply provide you with a situation of what he went by means of in someday of apply. It’s a 10-play situation. He had three picks, 4 incompletions, and three sacks.’ That was his 10-play sequence, OK.”
As talked about, this caught the attention and ire of Brown, who let the world understand it was pretend information.
The previous Titan additionally had somewhat enjoyable on the expense of the we-can’t-smile-because-we’re-Philly media.
I do know hypercritical is the best way sports activities are lined within the Metropolis of Brotherly Hate, and complaining about it solely makes them stronger. That stated, offseason exchanges about OTAs drown out what ought to be at minimal a cautiously optimistic vibe.
Backup QB Gardner Minshew requested in regards to the beginning gig in January, and was turned down by head coach Nick Sirianni, who has addressed his confidence within the place many instances. There have been the compulsory puff items this offseason about how Hurts is predicted to raise from fantasy darling to top-tier quarterback, and asking if he’s the subsequent Lamar Jackson. (Decelerate, CBS.)
But there’s by no means a query of which voice might be loudest in Philly. In his interview about Hurts’ very unhealthy day of 7v7s on Sports activities Take alongside Rob Ellis and Barrett Brooks, Gunn went on to say he’s rooting for the younger QB “as a result of [of] the entire negativism on the market surrounding him proper now. ‘He sucks.’ You hear extra of the ‘he sucks’ than ‘he’s the quarterback, the reply.’”
That’s what you must overcome in Philly, although. Unrelenting criticism, anger straight from the spring, “negativism.” It’s all a part of it.
Stadiums and arenas overflow with skeptical in-laws consistently evaluating why to not allow you to within the household. And while you consistently search for flaws and causes to not tip, the prophecy goes to get spoken, written, and tweeted into existence.
Professional Soccer Focus has Hurts projected to interrupt the 4,000-yard passing mark this yr, which has solely been achieved by one different Eagles QB (Carson Wentz in 2019). And but, after enjoying comparatively nicely and making the playoffs in his first yr as a starter, he’s already in a do-or-die season.
Hurts’ profession arc most likely falls someplace between Dak Prescott and a journeyman — and sometimes these distinctions might be decided by franchises and fan bases. He definitely performed higher than a variety of pundits anticipated. Think about the narrative if his debut season got here in Dallas, and he was recent off successful the division whereas being (statistically) essentially the most cellular quarterback within the league.
If Cowboys are consistently overrated on account of media adulation, then what does that make Eagles? I would want Hurts good luck, however he’s already shit out of it.