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The Cowboys loss was a reality check on Jalen Hurts and the Eagles

The good vibes are gone.

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Philadelphia Eagles v Dallas Cowboys Photo by Richard Rodriguez/Getty Images

As if watching the Philadelphia Eagles get blown out by their biggest division rival on Monday Night Football wasn’t bad enough, I had to hear a Dallas Cowboys gloat about the game the next day.

For those unaware, I record a weekly podcast with RJ Ochoa from Blogging The Boys called the NFC East Mixtape. The episodes air on both the Bleeding Green Nation and BTB podcast feeds.

RJ and I broke down our biggest takeaways from Monday night’s action, including how the game served as a reality check for the Eagles and their starting quarterback. Here’s a snippet of our conversation:

RJ: McCarthy’s 2-1 against the Eagles! Think about that. That is so depressing if you’re a Philadelphia Eagles fan. I’ve had some coffee today, I’ve had some energy drinks, I’ve had a lot of water. But more than anything I have the spirits of positivity and good vibes funneling all of the things and movements I’m making in my life.

BLG: Vibes are the only thing that matters. And the Eagles vibes were not good, clearly — as I said, RJ — heading in to this Week 3 game. And that ended up being a big deal because this Eagles team, not so great. I’m kind of ready to revise my take that I said in Week 1 that kinda showed us, hey, the Eagles aren’t a disgrace of a team. Which, I guess that much is true. They’re not the Jets, they’re not the Jaguars. They won a game this year and I think they’re going to win some more, whereas I don’t know if those other teams even will win one. Maybe they will, one or two, but that’s it. I think the Eagles can still win multiple games. I don’t think they’re THAT bad. But they’re certainly not a GOOD team. And I think that much is clear. Certainly a flawed team.

Am I shocked by that? No. Because this is exactly why I was feeling not great about the Eagles in the offseason. I think a lot of people let themselves get [too excited] by the distance from last season and the optimism of a new season. Which, again, is totally fine. And no one should be at fault for feeling optimistic. I think after the Week 1 game, after coming off of such a bad 2020 year, I think it was OK to overreact and want to feel good. Because you don’t know how long that’s going to last. And clearly it didn’t last. I don’t begrudge anyone for that or blame anyone for that.

What I DO blame people for is talking down on anyone, such as myself, who did not feel good about the team and acting like that wasn’t a valid option to have. Because that was very much a thing. And I’m not happy about being right! I want the Eagles to do well. But I was right.

RJ: You also were right — I joked before that you hated on Jalen Hurts. I don’t want to say you weren’t optimistic but you weren’t ready to —

BLG: I was realistic.

RJ: — you weren’t to say he was the guy. Jalen Hurts, not good. And, man alive, the standard Monday Night Football broadcast […] was just doing everything they could to make every excuse for Jalen Hurts. ‘Well, he’s really basically just a rookie.’ The sentence started with ‘He’s kind of a rookie’ to ‘he’s basically a rookie’ to ‘well, he’s a rookie out there.’ And all these excuses being made for him. He’s not a rookie. He’s had a full NFL offseason at this point, granted he had the COVID one last year. He’s had a full training camp, he’s had a head coaching change. That’s fine. But, no, you’ve got to evaluate him the way he is. He stinks.

BLG: The Hurts discussion is a little frustrating for me coming out of the game. I think there’s a little too much of like ‘Oh, he’s young, he’s a rookie.’ Which, we said, he’s not. That’s literally not up for debate. He is very much not a rookie. He’s a young player, he’s inexperienced, that much is true.

But my problem with this conversation is that you can’t just assume because a player is young and they struggle that they are DEFINITELY going to get better. I think not enough people, when it comes to NFL players in general and not just quarterbacks, can’t accept that a player, what they are, might largely be what they are. Not to say Jalen Hurts can’t ever get better and this is his peak and obviously it’s not because we’ve seen him play better than this. But I think this is giving you a realistic picture of what he is. I don’t think it’s wildly off-base. Just not the one [Cowboys] game but the whole sample we’ve seen this season thus far. I don’t think this is wildly off what Jalen Hurts is and is to come.

I think it’s clear that the Eagles had concerns about Jalen Hurts. This isn’t some kind of elite prospect. This is a guy who got benched in college because he wasn’t good enough at passing. This is a guy who was taken in the second round, at 53 overall. This is a player who didn’t have the best training camp, as I said throughout training camp. This is a player who the Eagles clearly weren’t all in because they traded for a first-round pick next year from the Dolphins, they moved back in this year’s draft. And they also were super heavily connected to Deshaun Watson. There was a reason for all of those things. You can’t just assume Jalen Hurts is going to be the answer.

People WANT to believe Hurts is the answer and that is rational from the standpoint that it would be amazing for the Eagles if Jalen Hurts was really good and you could use those first-round picks you have in the 2022 NFL Draft to build around, as opposed to have to trade them for a quarterback. But just because you want that to happen doesn’t mean it’s realistic or it’s going to happen. And I think everything we’ve seen from him thus far points to him not clearing that high bar that I think the Eagles are going to have for him.

We also touched on:

  • RJ’s bad vibes about Nick Sirianni
  • The Eagles’ defense having their worst game
  • The Cowboys (sadly) being legit
  • The Football Team and the Giants both sucking

And much more in this week’s episode. It’s a good one (I mean, for as good as a podcast can be after an Eagles loss to the Cowboys, at least) so give it a try.

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