What if Carson Wentz isn’t the only Philadelphia Eagles quarterback getting traded this offseason? What if the team also decides to move on from Jalen Hurts?
To be clear, I don’t think it’s a likely outcome. I think the Eagles will and should move forward with Hurts for now.
In the interest of coming up with some bold offseason predictions for this week’s episode of The ODDCast on The SB Nation NFL Show, though, Rob “Stats” Guerrera and I discussed a scenario where the Eagles get a little wild.
Here’s the situation: the Eagles trade Wentz AND Hurts and then move up to No. 3 in the 2021 NFL Draft. From there, they select Ohio State’s Justin Fields.
The Wentz part doesn’t need much explanation. It’s only a matter of time until the Eagles agree to terms on a deal that ships him out of Philly.
Trading Hurts doesn’t make the most sense, especially with Wentz leaving. The 2020 second-round pick is young, cheap, and brings some upside to the table. He’s probably worth more to the Eagles than what they could get in return for him (third-round pick at most? Day 3 pick?).
But perhaps the Eagles aren’t confident enough in Hurts’ throwing ability to think they can truly contend for a championship with him. There’s a decent chance the prospects at the top of this year’s draft are better risks to take than relying on Hurts.
Hurts did have some flashes late last season. There were some things to like, such as his mobility and the touch he puts on his passes (a stark contrast to Wentz).
But the overall numbers just weren’t pretty. We’re talking about a player who finished 40th out of 42 quarterbacks in Pro Football Focus grading and 31st out of 37 quarterbacks in Football Outsiders DVOA.
Hurts posted a 26.7% bad throw percentage and a 60.7% on target throw percentage. For context, Drew Lock finished as the worst quarterback among qualified passers last season with 22.9% and 68.9%, respectively. This is to say that Hurts was significantly worse than the worst marks.
Of course, this isn’t to suggest Hurts can’t improve. He played his rookie season at only 22 years old and he seems to have a great work ethic in addition to being highly coachable. Perhaps Nick Sirianni, Shane Steichen, and Brian Johnson will help bring out the best in Hurts. And even if the Eagles do draft a quarterback high this year, it doesn’t hurt (no pun intended) to keep Hurts around for more optionality.
Then again, the Eagles trading up for a quarterback or taking one at No. 6 pretty much signals that guy — and not Hurts — is now the future of the franchise. And it’s not like Hurts is necessarily going to gain more value from sitting on the bench. If a team finds themselves unsatisfied after the NFL quarterback carousel stops spinning, they could make a call to the Eagles about Hurts. Or maybe the Eagles use Hurts as part of the package to trade up to No. 3 and the Miami Dolphins reunite Hurts and Tua?!
As for Fields, I can’t say I’m fully versed on this year’s quarterbacks yet. But we all know Trevor Lawrence is going No. 1 and it seems like there’s a growing consensus about Zach Wilson at No. 2 ... whether it’s to the New York Jets or another team that trades up. Maybe it’s the Eagles who move up that high but I think some teams might be even more desperate to move up than they are. The Eagles could be intrigued by Fields’ accuracy after dealing with two pretty inaccurate passers in Wentz and Hurts.
Just something to think about while we wait for the Wentz trade to eventually (?!) take place.
Should the Eagles trade both Carson Wentz AND Jalen Hurts?
This poll is closed
Other bold predictions from this week’s podcast include:
- The Dallas Cowboys getting Russell Wilson (please no)
- Dak Prescott tag-and-trade
- The Colts landing two former Eagles quarterbacks ... but not Wentz
- J.J. Watt joining the NFC
Check it out!