JALEN Hurts won’t be a franchise quarterback. Let me say that up top, in plain and unbroken English. I told you that in June after 4 starts, in October after 10 starts, and in November after 13 starts. Now, 16 starts into his NFL career, I’m saying it again: Jalen Hurts will not, because he cannot, be a franchise QB.
The timing of this article couldn’t have been better. I told some friends (Andrea and Arlette), last week that I would write about this subject. Thanksgiving got in the way, and so I had to delay it. Turns out, that was for the best. Events during this last game have sharpened the points I’m about to make.
Over the last four weeks as the Eagles were piling up rushing yardage, most fans were satisfied. So long as Hurts was running for touchdowns, and leading the team in rushing, no one but me seemed to care that his game as a passer, kept being extremely pedestrian.
Detroit: 9/14 – 64.2% – 103 – 0 – 0. Los Angeles: 11/17 – 64.7% – 162 – 1 – 0. Denver: 16/23 – 69.5% – 178 – 2 – 1. (I won’t pick on the day Hurts had vs the giants. We know how that went.)
But let’s look at the Saints game, which we won in a blowout. Specifically, the stat line put up by Saints QB Trevor Siemian (22/40 – 55.0% – 214 – 3 – 2), vs the stat line by Hurts (13/24 – 54.1% – 147 – 0 – 0).
Siemian was slightly more accurate, got his supporting cast involved, and so, he nearly led a rally. This is despite being a third stringer, without his team’s starting RB, #1 WR, and BOTH Offensive Tackles. Hurts had none of these disadvantages, yet it can be argued that Siemian had a better day as a QB. Especially in regards to getting his teammates involved.
Teammates is another bone I have to pick with Hurts. I keep hearing about how he’s a field general. I keep hearing how he’s focused and competitive. However, during games, especially when we’re down, when I see him on the sideline…he’s just sitting there.
He’s not looking at the tablet. He’s not rallying the crowd. He’s not on one knee, talking to the O-line about protection slides. He’s not in the Offensive Coordinator’s ear, or standing next to his Head Coach. He’s not having an animated discussion about what he sees, to get on the same page with the receivers. He’s just sitting there, looking like he’s sucking on a lemon.
I say this as a man who’s worn pads and has played with multiple QB’s. Jalen’s body language sucks ass. Nothing about him says “Follow ME!” or “I got you.” His swagger is limited to him running for a touchdown. It doesn’t extend to his teammates.
For example, when LT Jordan Mailata pancaked Saints DE Marcus Davenport (because of his treatment of Hurts), was there an acknowledging fist bump or high-five from the QB? Nope. Hurts texted his thanks to Mailata, later that night. A text message! In exchange for sticking up for him! But when Hurts needed consoling after the giants game:
1,000 words, right?
BUT WAIT!!! THERE’S MORE!!!
Hurts may miss the Jets game with a sore ankle. I’ll say that one more time: Hurts may miss the Jets game with a sore ankle. Remember the three touchdowns QB Donovan McNabb threw against the Cardinals in November of 2002, on a broken ankle? Remember QB Carson Wentz tearing his ACL, and staying in one more play, to throw a touchdown vs the Rams, in our 2017 Super Bowl season?
Sore ankle. Those are the words of Head Coach Nick Sirianni.
I guess benching Hurts is the Eagles way of admitting that he’s a liability if he has to play from the pocket. Seriously. Would a sore ankle shelve Tom Brady? Ben Roethlisberger? Patrick Mahomes? Matt Stafford and Derek Carr have both played through back injuries. How about Brett Favre? Dan Marino played with TWO knee braces. Hell, “sore” never stopped Wentz from suiting up. Is Hurts more delicate than Wentz?
I’m not going to get into Hurts being inaccurate. I won’t mention how he’s slow to read defenses. I won’t mention that he’s ineffective running anything other than a one read system. I won’t mention that when the going got tough in college, he got going to another college, instead of overcoming the challenger.
Did I mention that so far he’s 0 – 4 vs the NFC East? That includes two blowouts vs the Cowboys. They humiliate us every time he starts against them. And of course all he could manage vs the giants, was 7 points. And we tanked against the Redskins, in a game that we were already losing. Like I said, 0 – 4.
I’ll simply ask: Is THIS your leader? Is this the face that you want to represent YOU? My answer is on his shirt, and even Rosa agrees with me.
That’s not to say that Hurts has no place in the NFL. I told you in June that the NFL was moving towards QB being a platoon type position. I told you in September, a week before the season started, that QB Gardner Minshew would play this year, somewhere around Week 8. He played in Week 8.
I’m going to say Hurts has a place in the NFL as a QB. Just not as a franchise. Not even as the Ace QB of a platoon. Think of him as a relief QB. Start thinking of him, as a back-up.