Find Out Why Jalen Hurts Could Regress This Season

In 2022 Philadelphia Eagles signal caller Jalen Hurts was expected to have a good year after leading the team to the playoffs in his first as a starter.

But, not only did Hurts go out and have a great season, the former Alabama and Oklahoma starting quarterback finished second in MVP voting to the Kansas City Chiefs’ Patrick Mahomes. The same guy he lost to in the Super Bowl, coming up just short in a thrilling 38-35 loss. 

Will Jalen Hurts Regress?

As great as Hurts was in 2022, the Eagles believe he can take another jump. Last week on ESPN’s “Get Up,” NFL analyst Jereme Fowler had this to say about Hurts heading into year three as the starter. 

“They also expect Hurts can make another jump. He’s done it every year. They believe he can be one of those elite precision-type pocket passers.”

And that’s exactly why Hurts could take a step back next year. It seems as if the Eagles want to see him become more of a pocket passer, based on Fowler’s comments. That would be a mistake, because he’s so good with his legs and throwing on the move. 

In 2022, Hurts garnered second-team All-Pro honors and his first Pro Bowl nod. He also went 16-2 as the starter under center missing two games with an injured shoulder.

Hurts connected on over 66 percent of his passes for a little better than 3,700 yards, 22 touchdowns, throwing just six interceptions.

The dynamic dual-threat also used his legs to rush for over 750 yards and 13 more touchdowns. 

Hurts Won’t Match 2022 Production

While those numbers are definitely possible for Hurts to duplicate, here’s why he won’t match the production this season.

If the Eagles coaching staff looks to make him more of a pocket passer that could stymie some of Hurts’ progress and the way he accumulated chunks of yardage. Airing it out from the pocket isn’t who Hurts is. Although he’s displayed marked improvement in that area, there’s no need to have him sit back there and try to be Peyton Manning or Tom Brady.

He’s better when he’s looking like the aforementioned Mahomes and Baltimore Ravens star quarterback Lamar Jackson. 

Secondly, defenses will adjust, and as a one-dimensional QB Hurts will be much easier to contain. That also means the Eagles’ running backs should be able to have some big rushing days via the zone read game that the Eagles offense utilizes. 

Lastly, the pressure of his huge deal will definitely be a factor. Even though Hurts is about as even-keeled as there is in the league, the expectations are huge. Those expectations and his new position as “the hunted” can bring some regression, with Hurts possibly trying too hard to prove he’s worth the money he’s being paid. 

Despite Hurts Possibly Taking A Step Back, He’ll Still Have A Good Season

Hurts taking a step back next season doesn’t necessarily mean the Eagles will fall off.

In fact, there’s still a great chance they end up in Las Vegas as the NFC champion in the Super Bowl. In a watered-down NFC, Hurts not being as good as 2022 probably won’t keep Philly from still winning the NFC East and hosting playoff games in the City Brotherly Love.

For Hurts, a great season isn’t all about numbers but how he directs the dynamic Eagles offense, which is loaded with weaponry.

Hurts is no longer the underestimated winner. After his Super Bowl appearance and record deal all of the pressure will be on him to elevate his game to another level. The Eagles would be wise to do more of what they did last season and not try to alter Hurts’ playing style.

Even if his numbers suffer, it won’t hurt the team’s win total. That’s how talented the Eagles roster is on the offensive side of the football. 

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