Love him or hate him, Jalen Hurts enters the 2022 season as the starting quarterback and face of the Eagles franchise. It’s crazy to think that the former second-round pick is only 24 years old. Hurts is only the sixth youngest starter in football.
So for Jalen Hurts’ birthday, we decided to dive into the archives and relive his five best games.
5. Jalen Hurts makes his debut
The Eagles 2020 season was a disaster. At 4-11-1, questions surrounding their original quarterback, coach, and even general manager had completely overtaken the dressing room. It came as no surprise that rookie Jalen Hurts started in early December.
Hurts completed 17 of 30 passes for 167 yards and a touchdown pass while also rushing for 100 yards to help the Eagles stun a 10-2 Saints team at Lincoln Financial Field.
Was Hurts’ game perfect? no But with a serious lack of guns around him and against one of the best defenses in football, Hurts put up an excellent game that helped Philadelphia fans celebrate for one of the few times all season.
4. Hurts-Herbert duel
Arguably one of Hurts’ best starts to the 2021 season was a loss to the Los Angeles Chargers. Justin Herbert was unstoppable on offense, and the Eagles barely had time to score throughout the game. It was a miracle Philadelphia was even in this game.
Yet in the limited moments he played, Hurts matched Herbert play-for-play and helped Philadelphia tie the game late into the fourth quarter. The numbers don’t tell the whole story. Hurts was 11 for 17 and just 162 yards over, but his hit against DeVonta Smith in the fourth quarter was one of the main highlights as the Eagles began to turn the corner in their run in the second half.
Numbers don’t tell the whole story about the Hurts/Herbert design year.
3. Suppression of the Falcons
Opening day of the 2021 season was a stellar start to the Hurts/Sirianni era in Philadelphia. Philadelphia opened the year against Atlanta, who arguably had an even worse year than the Eagles in 2020.
Hurts threw for over 260 yards and three touchdowns en route to a dominant 32-6 Falcons loss. Pinpoint accuracy, a balanced confidence in his legs, and efficiency in the red zone helped the Eagles quarterback get off to a great start in his first season as the face of the franchise.
2. Hurt’s duels with Kyler Murray
After going 1-0 in his first start against the Saints, Jalen Hurts lost an excellent duel to Kyler Murray and the Cardinals in December 2020.
Hurts and the Eagles fell in a 16-0 hole after the first quarter but fought back to level the game in the fourth quarter.
Hurts threw for 338 yards and three touchdown passes while also hitting the ground once. Looking like a franchise quarterback in this game, Hurts showed there was room for improvement in every respect.
1. Both 2021 games against Washington
The Eagles’ 2021 season consisted essentially of two games against the Washington Football Team. In both competitions, Jalen Hurts was arguably the best player on the field.
In the first matchup, the Eagles came back from an early deficit and came back in large part for their quarterback. In the first game, the team fell 10-0 down before Hurts took over. The then 23-year-old scored three goals (2 by rushing, 1 by passing) to help the Eagles win 27-17. Hurts accounted for over 290 yards of passing and 38 rushing yards to help the Eagles gain over 500 yards of offense.
The second matchup was far more challenging.
While the first game in Philly decimated the WFT with injuries, the second saw a much better defense fighting for their playoff life. Washington led 16-7 before a second-half attack started by Hurts. The Eagles would secure a playoff berth after the win.
In both games, Hurts did what franchise quarterbacks have to do: win the football game. If Hurts doesn’t play like he did in both games, the Eagles are likely to lose and the team would be out of the playoff hunt. Numbers don’t tell the whole story when judging quarterbacks. That’s evident in Hurts’ first full year as a starting quarterback.
But without him, the Eagles probably wouldn’t have made the playoffs the year before. Jalen Hurts is entering his second full year as a starting quarterback. If he continues to improve as he has so far, the Eagles’ 2022 season could be more special than last year.
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