Add another inspirational metaphor to the Jalen Hurts’ lexicon. When the Philadelphia Eagles’ quarterback was asked how he handled his first practice in charge of the first-team offense, the smooth-talking 22-year-old replied: “the lamp is never full.”
It echoed the 2021 motto of “getting one-percent better every day” shared by Hurts and his teammates in midnight green. Last year’s 4-11-1 record wasn’t good enough for anyone associated with the organization. The Eagles fired their Super Bowl-winning coach and traded their one-time franchise quarterback in an effort to start the youth movement earlier than expected. Hurts is now the mooring to which their rebuild is tied.
“The rent is due every day and I truly mean that and I have that mentality,” Hurts told reporters on Wednesday. “For a guy like me, I hold myself accountable to go out there and play at a high level every time I touch the field. And there’s not going to be anybody who holds Jalen to a higher standard than Jalen.”
The first true freshman to start for Alabama in 32 years doesn’t lack confidence in himself. He never has. But it seems as if everyone outside the Eagles’ locker room – and quite a few inside the front office – are filled with doubt.
“That’s my goal, that’s my goal,” Hurts said. “To be the best quarterback I can be every day, be the best teammate I can be every day, lead and everything else will handle itself.”
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Blocking Out Loud Outside Noise
The constant trade chatter, mainly in regard to Deshaun Watson, has been louder than Pearl Jam closing out the old Spectrum. Ear-splitting decibels engulfing Hurts’ ears all summer. It must have been hard to block it out, right? Wrong.
“What chatter?,” Hurts asked when a reporter mentioned the Watson rumors. “I’m above it all, I’m above it all, I’m above it all. Control what I can. I’m here and that’s what I’m doing, go out there and be the quarterback for this team.”
That answer wasn’t good enough for reporters so Hurts rephrased it for the hard of hearing in the back of the room.
“Come to work every day and practice,” Hurts said, “try to practice at a high level.”
Wait, really, that’s it? There’s nothing else to it?
“There’s not, there’s not,” said Hurts.
Win More Games, Learn From Last Year
Hurts wasted no time in getting his vaccination status out of the way on the first day of camp. Yes, the healthy young man from Texas received his COVID-19 shots. With that out of the way, he turned to describing some of his goals for the 2021 season and the lessons learned from his four starts last year as a rookie.
“Win, I’d like to win all of them,” Hurts said, referring to his 1-3 record as a starter in 2020. “We could have easily won all of them, and that’s the intention, that’s the goal. All of this, it starts in training camp.”