With that, fans and the media are beginning to shift their attention toward the future at the position. The question of who replaces Wentz seems to be a bigger debate than I initially assumed it would be.
The two questions you need to ask—and that Howie Roseman and the front office will need to answer—are simple:
- Do you believe Jalen Hurts has a future as a long-term starter in this league?
- Do you believe two QBs with potential claim to the starting job can co-exist next season?
Here’s a chart to better visualize that decision-making process:
Personally, I don’t blame people on either side of the Hurts debate; it comes down to different interpretations of the same four performances (different standards for what he needed to prove, essentially).
What I think is being overlooked is the discussion around potentially adding a higher-level QB prospect. Pro-Hurts or No-Hurts, the reality of our draft position gives us an option that potentially supersedes any question around Hurts’ viability as a starter.
Just because you think he can be a starter in the right system in this league doesn’t mean you have to put all your eggs in his basket and deny yourself the opportunity to add high-end to elite talent at quarterback—something that we all agree, Hurts just isn’t.
While I’m jarred that this debate even exists—a 1-3 record and abysmal accuracy speaks for itself—even if you disagree with me on the quality of Hurts as a player and you believe in his long term viability as a starter, he’s still not close to the same level as the quarterbacks at the top of this draft class (or any draft class).
I understand there’s an argument that says because you spent a second rounder on him you need to give him the benefit of time and resources to develop (and that may be the case at other positions) but that isn’t how QBs from outside the first round are generally treated.
The second round is “we need a real backup QB right now, we also hope he has the potential to develop into a system starter two or three years from now” range. Teams don’t spend a second rounder on quarterbacks that they truly believe in as a franchise guy on draft night, otherwise they wouldn’t let that guy fall to round two.
We can sit here and haggle over Jalen Hurts all day, but the reality is that debate just isn’t as urgent as it’s being made out to be. If the Eagles front office and Howie Roseman identify a quarterback in this draft class whom they like and can reasonably add—either at 6 or in a trade up to 3 or 4—they need to do it.
I’ve said it in the past and I’ll keep hounding this point: you don’t pick in the top 10 often (let alone top 6), and you certainly don’t plan on it. In a QB class as deep as this one (4-6 prospects projected to go in the first round) the Eagles can’t take their draft position for granted—especially when they don’t have a clear long-term answer at QB on the roster.