Eagles Hurt Without Hurts

Can Star QB Be the Difference in the Post Season? 

The Philadelphia Eagles are having an incredible season in the NFL, racking up the most impressive record in the competition, along with the Kansas City Chiefs. This success is down to a solid defence, but more notably, an incredibly efficient offence, with Jalen Hurts at the helm. After the star quarterback’s injury, however, the Eagles have gone on to lose two straight games, with many wondering whether the Birds peaked too early as the post season looms. 

Can the Birds’ main man salvage their form as they head into the play-offs, or will we see the Eagles’ form continue to drop? 

Jalen Hurts Injury and Expected Return 

Jalen Hurts injured his shoulder in Week 15’s clash with the Bears at Soldier Field. Hurts sustained the injury with many believing it to be a minor knock as the star quarterback finished the game against the Bears without missing a snap. After the game, however, an S/C joint separation in his right shoulder meant that he has had to miss the last two weeks of football. 

While this injury has sidelined the star for the last fortnight, Hurts attended practice in the Birds’ build up to their clash with the Saints, and is expected to return to the fold against the Giants in week 18. 

Minshew – Decent Against Cowboys, Struggled Against Saints

With Hurts being ruled out to recover from the knock he took to his shoulder, the Eagles offence rested on the shoulders of 26-year-old Mississippi native Gardner Minshew. Minshew is in many ways a very different QB to Hurts. What both quarterbacks share is a smaller stature, and precise passing game, however despite Hurts’ lack of height, the Eagles’ QB1 is a far superior athlete with the ability to rush if need be, while Minshew does not quite possess this skill set. 

Minshew’s outing against the Cowboys was impressive to say the least, but was not enough to secure the win against the top-10 defence team. While disappointing, Eagles fans began feeling that they could put their faith in Minshew while Hurts recovered from his injury. 

His outing against the Saints however painted a different picture. Bookmakers in Ontario  had Eagles with odds of -240 to win, pinning the Birds as heavy favourites, however Minshew had a less than impressive outing, with a handful of sloppy passes, along with often holding onto the ball too long. This performance was at the heart of the Birds’ second loss in a row, which was their first taste of back to back defeats this season. 

Is Hurts the Missing Link to Eagles’ Form? 

Let’s put it this way. With Hurts, the Eagles are 13-1. Without Hurts, they’re 0-2. A strong case can be made for the claim that Hurts, in his NFL MVP front running season, is the missing link to an Eagles attack that lacks an element of urgency and leadership. 

After Sunday’s loss to the Saints, Eagles fans are praying that Hurts’ predicted comeback in week 18 will in fact happen, so that the Birds can get back to winning ways. Jalen Hurts has been at the core of the Eagles success this season, putting up performances worthy of him being in the MVP picture. 

The next few days will determine whether Philadelphia’s star QB will be back, and whether they can heat back up as they enter the post season.

American Football International is your source for news and updates about American Football outside the United States!