Alabama in the Pros

After two starts, Jalen Hurts is showing he’s the right choice at quarterback for the Eagles

Jalen Hurts in the pocket for Eagles attempting a pass versus Cardinals
Mark J. Rebilas - USA TODAY Sports

After not having an offensive identity through four weeks, prior to facing the New Orleans Saints, the Philadelphia Eagles chose to start Jalen Hurts over Carson Wentz and a new energy has surfaced.

It took Wentz at the No. 2 overall pick of the 2016 NFL Draft, but its second-round pick from this year’s venue has fans excited and the future looking bright for the franchise. Hurts, a native of Houston, Texas, won his first career start over the Saints and totaled 167 passing yards, 106 rushing yards and one touchdown pass.

He guided the Eagles to a 24-21 victory and earned a second start on Sunday versus Kyler Murray and the Arizona Cardinals. In a matchup between the two Heisman finalist (Murray won the Heisman Trophy in 2018) from the University of Oklahoma, Murray led the Cardinals to a 33-26 win at home.

Despite falling short, Hurts was very impressive — especially in the passing game.

He recorded his first career 300-yard performance (338) and tossed for three touchdowns. As a two-time Southeastern Conference Champion (2016, 2018) and a College Football Playoff National Champion (2017) at Alabama, Hurts also rushed for 63 yards with a score on 11 carries. He made the contest very entertaining between he and Murray, and two-time Super Bowl champion Torrey Smith took notice on social media.

Smith was a wide receiver for eight years in the National Football League since 2011, as he spent time with the Baltimore Ravens, San Francisco 49ers, Philadelphia Eagles and Carolina Panthers.

His Super Bowl rings came with the Ravens (2012) and Eagles (2017).

Regardless of how impressive his second start was, Hurts comes from Nick Saban’s school of perfection.

He is about winning and winning consistently. In taking a loss, he knows more improvement has to happen.

Even at 4-9-1, people can tell a different vibe has taken place.

The one things that needs to happen in Philadelphia is drafting an offensive line.

Hurts was sacked six times against a fierce Cardinals pass rush. Once it addresses the situation in the draft, Hurts will have this team where it wants to be.

He is providing the type of leadership and growing production needed for the Eagles to be successful for years to come.

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Stephen M. Smith is the managing editor and senior writer for Touchdown Alabama Magazine.  You can “like” him on Facebook or “follow” him on Twitter, via @CoachingMSmith.

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