It’s been the dominant storyline all offseason: if Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts can make some key improvements, he’s got the team around him to be a contender. Head Coach Nick Sirianni says he’s seen his starting quarterback develop through this training camp, in particular in two key areas.
“I think what we have seen in practice over and over again is him being able to get through reads quicker, him being more accurate with his throws,” Sirianni said in his September 7 press conference. “So, it’s the same thing we’ve been talking about throughout the last, seems like about the last month, of just his progression as a player.”
Sirianni does not believe Hurts is done improving, though. The Eagles coach has certain traits he looks for that allow players to maximize their physical abilities, and he sees those in Hurts. “Guys that are competitive, guys that are tough and guys that love football have the ability to reach their ceiling and I can see him continuing to grow,” Sirianni said.
The other big factor that could help Hurts on the field this season is getting more experience in Sirianni’s offense, and becoming more comfortable.
“The more you rep something, the more comfortable you’ve going to be,” Sirianni said. “We have talked about this before as far as the quarterbacks in the NFL, sometimes they feel like they get better with age. Well, because they have seen everything.”
Sirianni says the Eagles coaching staff is giving Hurts every tidbit they have to help him improve, rather than pacing him like a younger quarterback. “Every coaching point we had on the plays that we have in, we are not holding any in our back pocket,” Sirianni explained. “He’s been hearing the same coaching points for a year. The job description, he understands the job description more because we have taught it to him more. He’s just developing there because of the amount of reps and like I said the type of person and the type of teammate and type of player he is.”
Eagles Teammates See Other Improvements in Jalen Hurts
It’s not just the coaching staff that has noticed a difference in Hurts, his teammates see changes as well. Tight end Dallas Goedert feels like Hurts is more in charge of the offense.
“Just like his command in the huddle, where if he’s going to kill a play, everybody knows that he’s killing the play, they know what we’re going to, they know why we’re killing it, all that stuff,” Goedert explained. “Just the way he runs it, you know him going through his reads, I think his second year as a true full starter and the second year in the offense is going to help him tremendously, and I think he’s been doing a great job.”
Meanwhile, Hurts has made a good impression on the other side of the line of scrimmage, as well. Veteran defensive end Brandon Graham praises his quarterback’s work ethic and fire.
“Jalen gonna be out there working, he’s been working this whole camp,” Graham said. “I’m loving just the competitiveness that I see with him every day.”
Graham views Hurts as the key player to the Eagles hopes this season, saying, “That’s the main guy that’s going to make us go, he already knows.”
Jalen Hurts Hoping to Improve on 2021
While the Eagles made the playoffs last year, Hurts threw for just 3,144 yards and 16 touchdowns with nine interceptions, while completing 61% of his passes. There’s definitely room to improve those numbers, which is part of the reason that Hurts finds himself on the hot seat this year, according to Heavy NFL insider Matt Lombardo.
The young quarterback had a lot of success on the ground, rushing for 784 yards and 10 touchdowns on 139 attempts, but the Eagles are hoping he can produce more through the air this campaign.