The company line hasn’t changed in six weeks. Jalen Hurts remains the starter in 2022 as the Philadelphia Eagles once again dismissed rumors of an impending quarterback trade.
The latest update came straight from the lips of general manager Howie Roseman during media availability at the NFL Scouting Combine. Roseman attacked the second question of Wednesday’s presser by laying to rest all doubt.
Hurts did enough last season to keep the job and the organization will look to surround him with a talented supporting cast. The top priority appears to be finding another receiver to pair with DeVonta Smith, via the upcoming draft or in free agency.
“There’s no doubt about it,” Roseman said when asked if Hurts was the starter. “I think when you talk about all the things we talked about at the end of the season, nothing has changed. I think what really has changed for us is the opportunity to add. This is a great time of year for the Philadelphia Eagles, for us, for our staff and being here and really getting everyone involved in the draft process. The start of free agency is up and coming.”
“We have to continue to add good players,” Roseman added. “We have to continue to make sure that we’re doing everything we can to maximize our players’ ability to be successful and, certainly, that starts at the quarterback position with Jalen.”
When pressed further on specific overtures to Deshaun Watson — Roseman reportedly sent an investigator to Houston – he gave Hurts another vote of confidence while declining comment on Watson.
“In terms of players on different teams, no matter what position, don’t feel comfortable, can’t talk about players on other teams.”
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Nick Sirianni Loves Hurts’ Intangibles
Hurts is far from a finished product as lingering concerns remain over his arm strength, accuracy, and decision-making in the pocket. All that being said, the young quarterback threw for 3,144 yards and 16 touchdowns in 15 starts last season while rushing for another 784 yards and 10 scores.
And Hurts inexplicably led a team with no expectations to a wild-card playoff berth. Head coach Nick Sirianni acknowledged Hurts’ shortcomings but praised his potential.
“He has amazing ability to create, whether things break down and the receiver might not get open or there is a breakdown in the offensive line,” Sirianni said on Wednesday. “What we saw throughout the year is not only can he create with his legs and make big plays with his legs, as the year went on you saw him become a weapon when he would move in the pocket, create in the pocket, and find his receivers down the field. You saw him create some explosive plays that way.”
It’s true. The Eagles ranked No. 2 in explosive plays in 2021, per Warren Sharp, at an electric rate of 12%. An explosive play – run or pass – is defined as anything that goes for 20+ yards.
Updating Jason Kelce’s Retirement Plans
Jason Kelce hasn’t made a “final decision” on his retirement plans, according to Sirianni. The head coach doubled down on a previous joke about sending the All-Pro a keg of beer as encouragement to return.
“We’re hopeful,” Sirianni said. “The keg has been sent to his house, and I think it got delivered today courtesy of Lower Merion Beverages, so appreciate them helping out with that.”