Jalen Hurts started the first game of his NFL career on Sunday. He looked serviceable and the Philadelphia Eagles won a football game for the first time since November 1st. To do that they knocked off the New Orleans Saints, who came into the game riding a nine-game winning streak as the top seed in the NFC.
Hurts threw for 168 yards and a touchdown and ran for another 106 yards. Looking across the NFL this season, that's the exact kind of line you would not be surprised to see from a winning quarterback like Taysom Hill, Cam Newton, or Lamar Jackson. So the Eagles won and Hurts looked like an NFL level starting quarterback so it should be pretty obvious that Hurts and not the eternally struggling Carson Wentz, would be the starter next week. Just don't expect Doug Pederson to say that. Via ESPN:
"I'm going to take a look at [the Saints film]. I'm going to look at a lot of different things before I make that determination this week."
This is basically the same thing Pederson did last week after Hurts came in and gave the Eagles "a little juice." And then Hurts started and did the same thing and they actually won. Not to mention when Pederson was misleading reporters about how many snaps Hurts was getting in practice a few weeks ago. So how are we back here again???
Why did the Philadelphia Eagles draft Hurts in the first place? Was Pederson not involved in the draft process? Did they not draft him for a scenario exactly like this where Wentz falls apart and Hurts steps in and looks like a competent professional football player? Wentz has a huge contact and Peter King thinks the Colts are a possible trade destination. Dan Orlovsky says you can't have both guys on the roster next year.
And yet Pederson still looks like he's stuck on Wentz. This is officially a lost season. They are two wins behind the Washington Football Team with the New York Giants still left to leapfrog. Pederson and the Eagles have seen the best and worst of Wentz no matter what they want to do with him.
Aside from Pederson not minding getting fired, there are only a couple reasons to not play Hurts at this point. Both point to the Eagles deciding which quarterback they're going to stick with in the future. They either want to trade Hurts who has more value because of his ability and contract, or they are ready to move Wentz. In that case, they want to give him an opportunity to do something to improve his value. If Hurts keeps playing and the Eagles continue to look competent that further tanks Wentz's value. Plus, you put Hurts at risk in games that do not matter.
Hurts is the obvious choice. So the galaxy brain take is that by making it look like he doesn't want to give up on Wentz, it actually proves he has given up on Wentz.