Eagles still eyeing QB trade despite Jalen Hurts progress

Insider’s view of Eagles QB trade scenario might irk fans originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia

Jalen Hurts’ last three games have probably added up to the young quarterback’s best three-game stretch in the NFL. He completed 62.5% of his passes, averaged 7.6 yards per attempt, piled up six total touchdowns between the passing game and the running game, and notched a pair of solid wins while narrowly losing the third game to a good Chargers team.

The tide has been slowly but surely turning on the Hurts detractors (myself included) as to whether he can be a viable starting QB in the NFL. Is he going to be Peyton Manning? No, probably not. But his dual-threat ability and knack for playmaking seems to be working in an offense predicated on the run, with talent at TE and WR1 positions.

All of that said… it sounds like the Eagles still might not be out on the idea of improving the position this offseason.

Sports Illustrated insider Albert Breer was asked in a mailbag column on Friday what he thinks the Eagles’ recent moves mean – extending Dallas Goedert, Avonte Maddox, and T.J. Edwards in the last week – in terms of positioning to trade for a QB this offseason.

Breer’s answer was interesting, and also might rub some Eagles fans the wrong way:

“Do I think [the Eagles’ recent string of extensions] foreshadows anything at quarterback? Probably not. 

“Based on the look of the 2022 draft class, my guess would be that they won’t draft one with one of their three first-round picks, seeing as though Jalen Hurts has come along and may have a brighter future now than any of those guys.

“Could they trade for one? Absolutely. Owner Jeffrey Lurie is sufficiently consumed with getting the quarterback position righted post-Carson Wentz, and I think Roseman and his crew would at least investigate the idea of Deshaun Watson or Russell Wilson in the offseason, anyway.”

Hmm. So Hurts has convinced the front office that he’s a better option than the incoming rookie class… but not that he’s a better, more cost-efficient option than an aging Russell Wilson or the thorny idea of trading for Deshaun Watson, who is currently facing dozens of sexual assault and harassment allegations.

That’s not a bad result for Hurts, who basically entered this season on a one-year prove-it trial, but it’s not exactly job security, either.

I was underwhelmed by Hurts in the early going this season, but his growth since Nick Sirianni moved to a run-first offense and played more to the QB’s strengths, has me encouraged. I still don’t know if he’s The Guy, but I wouldn’t mind another year to find out with an improved supporting cast and a roster not dragged down by Carson Wentz’s dead cap taking up valuable space.

Ultimately the Eagles won’t be the only ones competing for any available veteran QBs this offseason, so there’s no guarantee they can land one even if they’re interested. I would prefer adding three first-round-caliber pieces in the draft, but then again it’s hard to refuse adding a QB like Russell Wilson.

So we will see.

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