Jalen Hurts in Walking Boot for Left Leg Injury After Eagles' Loss to Buccaneers

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured Columnist IVJanuary 16, 2022

EAST RUTHERFORD, NEW JERSEY - NOVEMBER 28: Jalen Hurts #1 of the Philadelphia Eagles looks on as he walks off the field after his team's loss against the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium on November 28, 2021 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Elsa/Getty Images

Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts spoke to reporters in a walking boot on his left leg after the team's 31-15 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday.

John Clark @JClarkNBCS

Jalen Hurts was in walking boot after game<br><br>“It’s something I’ve been battling with. I didn’t play good enough today” <a href="https://t.co/TOMyv0RJEP">pic.twitter.com/TOMyv0RJEP</a>

The 23-year-old took over as the team's starting quarterback last season down the stretch as a rookie, replacing the beleaguered Carson Wentz, who was then traded to the Indianapolis Colts in the offseason.

Hurts also started the first 12 games for the Eagles this year before a left ankle injury kept him out of a Week 13 matchup with the New York Jets. 

The Houston native has generally played well when healthy, throwing for 3,144 yards, 16 touchdowns and nine interceptions during the regular season while completing 61.3 percent of his passes. While those numbers may not leap off the page, he's also rushed for 784 yards and 10 scores, providing a dual threat that has proved difficult for defenses to slow down. 

The question in Philadelphia is whether Hurts is the future of the franchise at quarterback—or if he's a solid player who can execute a run-heavy scheme that features his strengths but will struggle to make the tight-window throws that separate great QBs from average ones. 

If it's the latter, the Eagles have three first-round picks in the 2022 draft, giving them the ammunition to either trade up for a prospect they like or trade for a more established veteran. 

Hurts has probably done enough to buy himself at least another season at the helm, even after a disappointing show against the Bucs, and the Eagles could use those picks to address other major needs on the roster, namely on the defensive side of the ball. For a team transitioning to a younger roster built around players such as DeVonta Smith and Dallas Goedert, it's the biggest decision it faces moving forward.