What is the Philadelphia Eagles plan for ex-Alabama QB?

Published 12:51 pm Thursday, April 30, 2020

The Philadelphia Eagles made one of the most curious moves in the NFL Draft last week.

With glaring needs on defense, the Eagles used a second-round pick on Oklahoma quarterback Jalen Hurts.

When it comes to draft decisions, I often side with the team’s management. After all, these teams pay scouts to attend college football games across the country in search of blue-chip talent and hidden gems.

I’ll make an exception this time: the Philadelphia fan base and beat writers who cover the Eagles are right. Both sides question Philadelphia selecting the one-time Alabama starting quarterback as a backup.

I agree because the selection of Hurts in the early portion of day two didn’t make sense to me either.  Especially after Philadelphia gave its starting quarterback, Carson Wentz, a $128 million contract extension last spring.

I know that Wentz has spent a lot of his five-year NFL career sidelined with various injuries, but use a high pick for a backup signal caller?

Philadelphia made the playoffs as the NFC East Division winner, but picking Hurts so high will not help the Eagles beat the Dallas Cowboys. Philadelphia needs defensive backs and linebackers to cover an explosive Cowboys offense loaded with two big-play receivers: Alabama’s Amari Cooper and first-round pick CeeDee Lamb of Oklahoma.

Hurts is a great kid and wonderful team leader, but I felt he should have gone in either the third round or the fourth round.

I saw all of the post on social media, especially from diehard Alabama fans, turned Oklahoma Sooner bandwagon riders about Hurts’ selection. Some of the fanatics made a bizarre prediction that Hurts will be starting in the near future.

I heard the comparisons to Baltimore Ravens’ Lamar Jackson, but it’s not even close. Jackson is a strong passer, but prefers to run first. Once Jackson learns how to throw first and runs second, he will be the NFL’s ultimate weapon in the mold of Hall of Famer  Steve Young and Randall Cunningham, passing quarterbacks who could run.

The way I see it, Hurts is not ready to become a NFL starting quarterback or a quality backup at this point.  Running a traditional NFL style offense, Hurts struggles with accuracy and decision making. If Hurts plays like he did at Oklahoma last season, defenders will pound him.

My guess is that the Eagles will use Hurts the same way as the New Orleans Saints utilize Taysom Hill: receiver, wildcat quarterback and special teams.

I’m not saying Hurts won’t be an NFL starting quarterback in the future. It’s just going to take some time for Hurts to learn a traditional NFL offense.