Jalen Hurts to remain Philadelphia’s QB, coach saysDecember 6, 2021
Jalen hurts will remain as Philadelphia quarter back head Coach. Minshew Mania will be one-day phenomenon in Philadelphia, Eagles coach Nick Sirianni said after a 33-18 victory over the New York Jets on Sunday with Gardner Minshew at quarterback.
The former Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback made his first start of the 2021 season because an ankle injury prevented Jalen Hurts from taking the snaps for Philadelphia on Sunday.
Minshew completed 20-of-25 passes for 242 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions. His passing-efficiency rating of 133.7 was better than any game that Hurts has had throwing the football this season, and the Eagles’ No. 1 quarterback had completed 14-of-31 passes for 129 yards with no touchdowns and three interceptions in Philadelphia’s previous game, a 13-7 loss to the New York Giants on Nov. 28.
When asked after Sunday’s game if Hurts would remain the Eagles’ starting quarterback after Minshew’s performance, Sirianni said: “Yeah, of course.”
“I think he’s played really good football,” Sirianni said of Hurts. “I think there’s been times when he’s been one of the best in the league with the way he’s moved around, made plays. We look at that quarterback rating and what he’s had there, and so he’s played really good football when he’s in, so when he’s healthy and he’s back, he’ll be our starter.”
Hurts started Philadelphia’s final four games of his rookie season in 2020, and the former Alabama standout retained the starting role in 2021. This season, Hurts has completed 211-of-351 passes for 2,435 yards with 13 touchdowns and eight interceptions and has run for 695 yards and eight touchdowns on 122 carries. Even after missing a game, Hurts ranks 11th in the NFL in rushing yards.
Sirianni said the decision to go
with Minshew wasn’t made until Sunday.
“He wasn’t healthy enough to play,” Sirianni said of Hurts. “We thought he was getting better, but we’re always going to put the health of the player first and foremost, and so he just wasn’t healthy enough to play.”
Hurts will have extra time to recover before Philadelphia’s next game. The Eagles have reached their bye week and don’t play again until Dec. 19, when they start a four-game run to the end of the regular season.
“I don’t want to put timetables on anybody because, again, you’ve just got to see how the body heals and the body reacts to everything,” Sirianni said when asked if Hurts would be back for the next game. “But I would think so. The bye’s coming at the right time for us. We got to get a lot of guys back to peak performance.”
Minshew said he’d like to stay in the lineup, but he’d understand if that didn’t happen.
“Anybody who’s halfway competitive wants to play,” Minshew said. “That’s what’s fun. That’s why you play the game. But I know whatever role I’m in, I’m going to give it 110 percent and do whatever I can for the team.”
Minshew said Jalen Hurts had been a good teammate. The Eagles obtained Minshew in a trade with the Jaguars on Aug. 28.
“It’s been great,” Minshew said. “He’s been welcoming with open arms. It’s been awesome. I think we do a good job of supporting each other, helping each other, making each other better, so I’m super-happy to have Jalen in our room.”
The Eagles enter their bye week at 6-7. The Dallas Cowboys lead the NFC East with an 8-4 record. Philadelphia is sandwiched in the division standings by the 6-6 Washington Football Team and 4-8 New York Giants. The Eagles are one-half game out of the final wild-card spot in the NFC postseason field, currently held by the 6-6 San Francisco 49ers.
Philadelphia’s remaining schedule features only NFC East rivals. The Eagles face Washington on Dec. 19 and, in their only remaining road game, on Jan. 2 and play the Giants on Dec. 26 and the Cowboys on Jan. 9.