The Philadelphia Eagles had just finished their third straight season in the playoffs. They watched franchise quarterback Carson Wentz fall injured again after giving him a massive extension.

The Eagles had questions and concerns going into that offseason, but no one could predict what was coming next.

April 24th, 2020. The NFL Draft was into its second day with rounds two and three on deck. The Eagles went on the clock at pick 53 and what they did next shocked the NFL world.

The Eagles selected Jalen Hurts with the pick. Just after signing Wentz to be their franchise guy the Eagles drafted his eventual replacement.

At the time the pick was criticized and mocked all around the league. Hurts was never projected to be an All-Pro or the guy at quarterback to lead a team to the Super Bowl. We knew his legs were a major strength, but no one thought he had the chance to be a legitimate passer. He was deemed the next Taysom Hill. That pick ended up saving the Eagles’ future.

In his rookie year Hurts spent most of the season watching from the bench as Wentz mightly struggled. The Eagles were 3-7-1 and then in week 13 when Wentz was struggling once again, Doug Pederson inserted the rookie Hurts.

Hurts would get his first career NFL start the following week and rejuvenated the entire team. He led the Eagles to a 24-21 victory over the Saints. Hurts would start the rest of the season, but the Eagles would not win again.

The team finished 4-11-1 and the future looked bleak. In that off-season, the Eagles ended up trading away Wentz handing the future of the franchise to Hurts.

Hurts went into his first season as the starter and got the Eagles back into the playoffs. One year after the future looked so dull, Hurts was the shining light that got the franchise back on track.

The Eagles lost in the wildcard round, but the season was still a major success. They unloaded Wentz’s massive contract and Hurts proved he was the guy, even though some fans and media weren’t sold on him. Hurts accounted for 26 touchdowns in 2021 while only throwing nine interceptions. Hurts proved to be a dynamic playmaker in his first season as the starter and showed he had what it takes to be the man at the quarterback position.

Even after leading the team to the playoffs in his first full year, people weren’t sold on Hurts being the future. General manager Howie Roseman doubled down and said Hurts is our guy and they will build the team around him.

Roseman stuck to that promise and acquired superstar wide receiver A.J. Brown during the 2022 NFL Draft in a trade with the Tennessee Titans.

Now going into his second season under Nick Sirianni and with a big new target to throw to, the pressure was on Hurts to improve off his 2021 campaign, especially as a passer.

This season Hurts shut all of his haters up. The front-runner for MVP before his injury, Hurts was the anchor behind the 14-3 number-one seed in the NFC Eagles. Yet still, people did not believe he could get the Eagles to the big game. The offense put up the second most points this season and was third in total yards per game.

Hurts accounted for 35 total touchdowns this season, 22 in the air and 13 on the ground, while only having six interceptions. The jump he made from his first season starting to his second is why this franchise is where it is now.

Now here we are. One week from Super Bowl 57 with Hurts under center.

The last three years have been a roller coaster, but everything has led to this moment now. The firing of Doug Pederson. The trade of Carson Wentz. Everything looked to be going horribly wrong, but Roseman saved the sinking ship. At the end of it all, Roseman found the right answer at quarterback.

Hurts was never supposed to be here. Now at age 24, in his second year as a full-time starter, he has the Eagles one win away from lifting the Lombardi Trophy.

The moment is never too big for Hurts. The calm, cool, and collected Texas kid has been the leader this team needed under center. All he needed was a chance and now he’s one win away from silencing all his critics.

Featured Image:  Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images

Comments are closed.

Check Also

Jahmyr Gibbs Is a Better Fit in Philadelphia Than Bijan Robinson

The hype continues to build within Philadelphia sports talk that the Eagles may select Bij…