Don’t go buying that shiny new midnight Jalen Hurts jersey just yet. The Philadelphia Eagles intend to bring in competition at the quarterback position, per ESPN’s Adam Schefter and Chris Mortensen. The starting job might be up for grabs.
This isn’t the first time the possibility of an open competition at Eagles training camp has been mentioned. However, it bears a second glance considering the two plugged-in reporters chose to include it in their story announcing the Carson Wentz trade. While some are interpreting to mean that Philly might use the sixth overall pick on another signal-caller — Ohio State’s Justin Fields keeps on popping up — they could be looking to add a veteran in free agency.
Two free-agent quarterbacks immediately stand out due to their close ties to members of the new coaching staff. Jacoby Brissett has worked with Eagles head coach Nick Sirianni for the past three seasons in Indianapolis, while Tyrod Taylor mentored under Eagles offensive coordinator Shane Steichen for two years in Los Angeles. Meanwhile, new passing-game coordinator Kevin Patullo was Ryan Fitzpatrick’s quarterbacks coach with New York in 2016. All three savvy veterans are available.
“Every position is going to be evaluated and every position is going to be open, I guess to say,” Sirianni told reporters at his introductory press conference. “We can’t wait, again, to start watching the tape and seeing what our players can do.”
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Sirianni Has Spoken to Jalen Hurts
Sirianni admitted to having a conversation with Hurts back on Jan. 29 and promised to dive into his game tape. He preferred to keep their exact dialogue “private” but the new head coach clearly came away impressed with the kid’s confidence.
Sirianni also had scouted Hurts prior to the 2020 draft when Indianapolis was looking at him. He should have the inside track on the starting gig in Philly.
“I’m really excited to work with him. We studied him last year. Had a great college tape. He played meaningful snaps this year that he played well in,” Sirianni told reporters. “Most of the conversation is getting to know the individual besides football. I’m going to learn a lot about them in football.”
Hurts was impressive at times during his rookie campaign, most notably the first player in NFL history in the past 70 years to have 500-plus passing yards and 150-plus rushing yards in his first two career starts. But there was plenty of bad mixed in with the good. He completed 77-of-148 passes (52%) with six passing touchdowns versus four interceptions. He also rushed 63 times for 354 yards and three scores (nine fumbles). His record as the starter was 1-3.
Eagles Can’t Announce Wentz Trade Yet
There won’t be any official announcement or press conference about the Wentz trade until the start of the new league year on March 17. Rest assured, the Eagles are working hard to dot the t’s and cross the i’s because the organization doesn’t want to be on the hook for Wentz’s $10 million roster bonus. Either way, the Eagles will have to absorb the quarterback’s $33.8 dead-cap charge.
The compensation for Wentz — 85th overall pick in this year’s draft, plus a conditional second-rounder in 2022 — continues to be greatly debated on social media. The consensus hates it, but it was the best offer (maybe only offer) that was on the table.
And there is an interesting escalator in the trade that should benefit the Eagles in the end. If Wentz plays at least 75% of the Colts’ offensive snaps in 2021, then that 2022 conditional pick will turn into a first-rounder, per ESPN. What are the chances of that happening? Very good.
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