With Carson Wentz expected to be traded in the coming days, if not hours, the Eagles are suddenly in the market for a quarterback—or so I had thought.
According to SI.com (Eagle Maven), sources close to the situation indicate that Howie Roseman and the front office are all-in on Jalen Hurts as the starter for 2021, and believe in his potential as a long-term solution at quarterback.
“Doug did not buy into Hurts the way Roseman did at all,” said the source, “…the two could not come to an agreement on his future with the team.”(via SI, Eagles Maven)
In other words: Doug was Team Wentz, Howie was Team Hurts.
Doug’s frustrations with the organization have been well understood, but this is the first time we’re hearing about a specific preference for Wentz, or that Carson vs Hurts was a real sticking point between Howie and his former head coach.
As for Roseman, this isn’t surprising. We always knew him to be in favor of Jalen Hurts more so than most evaluators—after all, he drafted him in the second round—but the idea that he and the organization are committed to him as the starter heading into next season is disappointing to say the least.
It’s long been understood that Howie’s decision to draft Hurts last year was largely influenced by regret over not drafting Russell Wilson in the second round in 2012—a minor detail that made me laugh out loud last April, but one that genuinely frightens me today.
I’ll state what I had always thought was obvious: Jalen Hurts isn’t Russell Wilson—not even close. The idea of them having similar talent or potential is plain incorrect, so much so that I won’t dignify the thought with a rebuttal.
While I understand moving on from Wentz for the sort of package that’s being reported is a smart move for the organization, I’ve long held that if the team is going to move on from Carson they better have a long-term replacement lined up, and Jalen Hurts is absolutely not that guy.
Through four games he proved to be every bit as inaccurate with the football as he was in college, and the offense wasn’t any more successful under him than it had been under Wentz. There weren’t any real reasons to like Hurts coming out of school, and after four starts there’s still not a whole lot to buy into.
The alternative to rolling with Hurts is pretty clear: use the sixth overall pick or package it to trade up for one of the quarterback prospects in the upcoming draft class. Trevor Lawrence—the consensus top QB in the group—won’t be available, but Zach Wilson, Justin Fields, and Trey Lance should all be on the Birds’ radar. One, if not two of them will be available at six, and trading up to 3 or 4 is always an option if we fall in love with one of the three.
To me, that’s the smartest course of action. Organizations don’t pick this high often (or at least they don’t plan to) and the Eagles should capitalize on this opportunity while they have it.
After the end to the season I truly ruled out the possibility of the organization having the confidence in Hurts to roll with him as their starter for next season, but if these reports are to be believed then that’s exactly what they plan to do. In which case any remaining belief you may have in this organization should be gone.