In the aftermath of the Eagles 33-18 win over the Jets—spearheaded by backup quarterback Gardner Minshew—Nick Sirianni put questions of a controversy to rest when he announced that Jalen Hurts would continue as starter upon return from injury.
The way he sees it, there is no controversy—but history tells us that isn’t for him to decide. Words in a press conference or order of names on a depth chart don’t dictate the presence of a quarterback controversy, results on the field do.
Gardner Minshew put together the best performance from a quarterback that the Eagles have had all season, just one week after Jalen Hurts single-handedly lost the Giants game with the worst performance from a quarterback they’ve had all season. That is an undeniable reality, and if it doesn’t signal a QB controversy then I’m not sure what does.
Funny that Nick Sirianni was trying to tell Eagles fans that Jalen Hurts was competing with Joe Flacco for QB1 before the season.— Barstool Philly (@BarstoolPhilly) December 7, 2021
Then Minshew beat Jets w/ a 133.7 QBR just a week after Hurts lost to Giants w/ a 17.5 QBR.
but there is no QB controversy in Philly.
14/31 passing for a measly 129 yards (4.2 ypa) and 3 of the ugliest interceptions you’ll ever see can’t be dismissed as “one bad start.” An offense that runs for 200+ yards on over 6 yards per carry losing because of their quarterback is something that should never happen. It’s rare that a loss can be laid at the feet of one person/player—despite lazy narratives attempting to do so after any loss—but that was absolutely the case against the Giants.
I’ll reiterate: Nick Sirianni and Jalen Hurts stans can argue that there isn’t a quarterback controversy until they’re blue in face, but that doesn’t change reality. If Jalen Hurts struggles against Washington off the bye week, or worse, the Eagles lose, then he will be benched—that’s as much of a guarantee as the sun rising in the morning. I completely understand giving Jalen the opportunity to stabilize his job, but don’t try to sell me that he isn’t on his final lifeline here.
Whether or not you as a fan are fatigued of the seemingly constant backup QB narratives here in Philly is irrelevant. Each instance over the past few years has warranted a legitimate controversy, and time has proven that each of those narratives were the appropriate discussion to be having.
Is it not now clear that Foles over Wentz was the proper assessment? Did Wentz’s play not warrant an obvious benching for Hurts last season? None of the “QB controversies” that have transpired over the past handful of seasons have proven to be unwarranted. If we go further back, Vick was better than Kolb, then Foles was better than Vick—the examples are endless.
Does the media play a convoluted role in the discourse around these controversies? Absolutely. But the idea that they concoct these narratives out of nowhere for their own gratification is flatly incorrect.
Since 2006, the #Eagles are 40-18 with a backup QB starting.— Luke Stansfield (@Luke_StansNFL) December 6, 2021
There is chum in the water as far as the Hurts/Minshew debate is concerned, and the sharks are circling. Considering the team’s position in the thick of the NFC playoff race, we should be more sensitive to a possible change at quarterback, not less (as has been suggested).
If you are of the belief that Jalen Hurts gives the Eagles the best chance to make the playoffs then I won’t disagree with you—we’ll be able to draw pretty strong conclusions on that after the coming weeks—but Hurts’ leash ultimately doesn’t extend beyond the team’s next loss, and that’s the only proof of controversy one should need.