Eagles

Doug Pederson says Jalen Hurts not ready to be Carson Wentz’s backup

Doug Pederson says Jalen Hurts not ready to be Carson Wentz’s backup

So much for competition for the No. 2 quarterback spot. 

Doug Pederson said Nate Sudfeld already has the job.

“I fully expect Nate to come in and be aggressive and do the things that he's capable of doing and become the backup to Carson,” Pederson said Tuesday. 

That means Jalen Hurts, the 53rd pick in this year’s draft, will start the season as the Eagles' No. 3 quarterback.

Which is how Sudfeld finished last season.

When last year began, Sudfeld was No. 2, but when he broke his wrist in the summer, the Eagles signed Josh McCown. And even when Sudfeld was healthy, McCown remained No. 2 and wound up playing most of the playoff loss to Seattle.

McCown is no longer around, and the Eagles’ quarterback room includes Wentz, Sudfeld, Hurts and former Giants 4th-round pick Kyle Lauletta.

Sudfeld is going into his fifth NFL season and fourth with the Eagles, so even though he’s played sparingly - and never taken a meaningful snap - it makes sense that he’d be ahead of Hurts.

Especially during an offseason with no OTAs.

Pederson compared this offseason to 2011, when the lockout wiped out all offseason workouts and limited the amount young players were able to learn and prepare for the season.

Seeing this pandemic and thinking back to when we came out of the lockout year, I think early on in this season, football teams are going to have to rely on their veteran players, and Nate is one of those guys for us,” Pederson said. “He's been on our roster the last couple of seasons and he knows exactly what we are doing. I have a ton of confidence in Nate to become the backup quarterback. Nothing is ever handed to anybody I always try to create competition at every position, and quarterback, as you guys know, is not exempt from that.

Sudfeld has completed 21 of 25 career passes for 80 percent, which makes him the most accurate quarterback in NFL History with a minimum of 25 attempts for those of you who care about meaningless stats.

His 106.0 career passer rating is 3rd-highest in NFL history among QBs who’ve thrown 25 passes, behind Craig Nall (123.8) and Pat Mahomes (108.9).

Sudfeld’s only career TD pass was a 22-yarder to Nelson Agholor at Washington on the final day of the 2018 season.

Hurts, who started his college career at Alabama and finished at Oklahoma, finished second in last year’s Heisman Trophy balloting, behind only LSU quarterback Joe Burrow.

Jalen is just learning and picking up our system, and he’s another one, another young player that we drafted who, there's a lot to learn,” Pederson said. “So are we going to take it a little bit slower maybe with him until he grasps the offense? You might have to. What I like about it is always the unknown, and the unknown is how well a guy I think can progress. And then once we get him on the grass, put him through drills, put him through practices, then we see exactly what these guys are all about. Right now, Jalen is doing an outstanding job of picking up the offense, spitting it back to [quarterbacks coach] Press [Taylor] and understanding what we are trying to get done.

Sudfeld, 26, is on a one-year contract and has expressed a desire to compete for a starting job after this season, which won’t happen here.

So Hurts in 2021 will be expected to be No. 2. 

But for now he’ll be the world’s most famous third-stringer, trying to make an impact as a gadget player as he learns an offense the Eagles hope he doesn’t have to run for a long time.

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Eagles' Jalen Reagor has perfect response for Skip Bayless criticism

Eagles' Jalen Reagor has perfect response for Skip Bayless criticism

Jalen Reagor hasn't yet set foot on a football field wearing midnight green, but the Eagles' first-round pick is already a pro at comebacks.

Professional Talker Skip Bayless popped off about Reagor's (admittedly unexpected) draft slot late last week, making fun of the Eagles for taking Reagor at No. 21 overall.

Here's what Bayless had to say:

I about fell out of my chair over that, for the wrong reason. Jalen Reagor went way higher than any draft expert had mocked him. I'm mocking that pick right now, because I thought it was a silly pick, because there were four, five other receivers I would've taken over Jalen Reagor.

There are, of course, different ways to responds when a person like Bayless (loud, looking for attention) singles out a player.

You can try to argue the points made, and point out that while Reagor going at No. 21 overall may have been a surprise, you'd be hard pressed to name four wideouts who went after Reagor and are widely seen as better players.

Justin Jefferson at No. 22? Fine. Brandon Aiyuk at No. 25 is a pick 'em, as is Tee Higgins at No. 33, and most basically everyone would give Reagor the edge over guys like Laviska Shenault, K.J. Hamler, and Chase Claypool.

You can take the petty angle and remind Bayless, a noted Cowboys fan, which team is the reigning NFC East champion. (It's the Eagles.)

Or you can be Reagor, and simply tell Bayless that you heard what he thinks, and keep it moving:

Nice and subtle. Reagor is keeping a list, but he's unbothered. Perfect.

Something tells me this clip will be re-shared plenty when Reagor scores his first touchdown against the Cowboys.

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How Tom Brady says the Eagles helped create the 'Patriot Way' in New England

How Tom Brady says the Eagles helped create the 'Patriot Way' in New England

ESPN's decision to seize on the success of "The Last Dance" by teasing a similar documentary about Tom Brady has grabbed sports fans' attention, even if the doc doesn't come out until 2021.

And while reliving Brady's greatest accomplishments isn't an ideal way to spend several hours, the way the Eagles are intertwined with Brady's Patriots legacy certainly suggests there will be tons of insights for Philly fans in the final product.

Like, maybe, Brady saying he feels the fabled 'Patriot Way' began because of the Eagles.

Here's the doc's producer Gotham Chopra, talking to Sports Illustrated's Albert Breer, on the way Brady viewed his time in New England:

CHOPRA: There was something we recently did on that 2004 Super Bowl, where he talked about the culture of that team. All this stuff you hear about Patriot Way, and Do Your Job, stuff that Bill has created over the years, the philosophies, this is the year that really happened.

He’s like, ‘First year, kind of a miracle. The next Super Bowl, O.K., now we’re getting our feel. And that first Eagles Super Bowl, this is where the Patriot Way was born.’

Welp.

Odds are good the Patriots would've been great for the last 15 years no matter what, but it's sort of frustrating to know the Eagles losing to Brady helped, at least in Brady's mind, establish New England's brand of success.

Who knows: If Donovan McNabb & Co. managed to pull out the win, maybe we would've had a very different last 15 years.

One thing Eagles fans can get excited for, at least, is Brady's reaction to losing Super Bowl LII to the Eagles.

It's unclear how much behind-the-scenes stuff we'll see from the game - Chopra said Brady suddenly got cold feet about filming in Minneapolis that week - but It sounds like it really changed him as a person:

CHOPRA: What he told me about that Eagles loss, it was dealing with it as a father, dealing with it as a husband. He was a very different person than with the Giants losses, he had a different perspective that I think poised him for that game. I thought, ‘Wow, it’s really interesting how a guy who’s still at it is learning like that.’ Because he’s like [Michael] Jordan, he’s incomparable. There’s no one else who has that story, has that perspective.

It's so strange to think how, despite playing in a different conference, the Eagles have played a pretty significant role in shaping the way the world sees Brady and the Patriots.

For better, and for worse.

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