NFL Exec on Eagles Drafting Jalen Hurts: 'I Don't Think It's All That Crazy'

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistMay 2, 2020

Oklahoma quarterback Jalen Hurts runs a drill at the NFL football scouting combine in Indianapolis, Thursday, Feb. 27, 2020. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)
Michael Conroy/Associated Press

The reaction from Philadelphia Eagles fans to the selection of Jalen Hurts in the 2020 NFL draft was largely negative, but there is support for the pick from at least one NFL team executive. 

Per The Athletic's Mike Sando, the anonymous executive explained why they don't think "it's all that crazy" that the Eagles brought in Hurts to serve as Carson Wentz's backup: 

"The biggest problem with something like that is the message it sends to people who like to crush Carson Wentz. That is a tough media market, so it sends a really weird message. But if you think about it, Carson Wentz has been hurt every year of his career. The backup quarterback is an important position, but to them it is critical because that person is going to have to come in and win you a couple of games."

Hurts was Philadelphia's second 2020 draft pick (No. 53 overall), as it took TCU wide receiver Jalen Reagor in the first round. 

ESPN's Mel Kiper Jr. included the Eagles' decision to take Hurts among his puzzling Day 2 moves, though it was more because of team need than a criticism of the quarterback's talent:

"Hurts has been a hot name over the past few weeks, and this is right around the range where I expected him to go. I would have loved to see him end up in a place where he could compete to start, but I wouldn't be surprised if he impressed in spot starts and is a full-time starter in a couple of yearsin Philly or someplace else. What makes this more of a head-scratching pick is that an edge rusher like Zack Baun or a safety like Ashtyn Davis could have helped the Eagles immediately."

B/R's Matt Miller noted Hurts' play "at Alabama and Oklahoma plus conversations with coaches and scouts suggest he's capable of evolving on the go like a Lamar Jackson or Josh Allen."

Perhaps no team in the NFL understands the value of a quality backup quarterback better than the Eagles. Nick Foles was instrumental in their Super Bowl LI-winning run after Wentz tore his ACL in Week 14 against the Los Angeles Rams

Last season marked the first time since Wentz was a rookie in 2016 that he played all 16 games. 

Hurts finished second in Heisman Trophy voting last season after throwing for 3,851 yards, running for 1,298 yards and accounting for 52 touchdowns in 14 games for the Sooners.