One of the most interesting picks of the 2020 NFL Draft was the Philadelphia Eagles selecting former Alabama and Oklahoma quarterback Jalen Hurts. With highly-paid Carson Wentz installed as the team's incumbent starter, observers in and around the NFL were pretty surprised to see the Eagles use a second-round selection on a player who -- in the best-case scenario for the team -- would be Wentz's backup and an occasional gadget player. The Eagles were careful to say that Wentz was still their starter and that they saw nothing changing on that front, but also indicated that they had a plan for Hurts to be involved in the offense.
Through the early portion of the season, that's exactly how things have worked. Wentz has started every game and been on the field for 100 percent of the snaps. There have yet to be any indications that the Eagles are considering elevating Hurts into the starting lineup. But his snap share has been increasing slightly as the season has moved along.
Hurts played a season-high seven snaps on Sunday against the Ravens -- 10 percent of the Eagles' total plays. He ran two times for 23 yards and caught a three-yard pass as well. The three total touches tied for a season high, while the 26 total yards set a new high-water mark.
On Monday, Eagles coach Doug Pederson indicated that we might be seeing even more of Hurts in the near future.
"In the case of Jalen, obviously you saw yesterday some of what we call X plays or plays that are sort of unscouted with him have been productive for us in the last three or four weeks," Pederson said on Monday following the team's Week 6 game against the Ravens. "I think it's something that we've got to continue to explore. It does give us the ability to run the football with him, so he's like another -- I don't want to say he's another running back, but he's a quarterback that can run the zone-read plays from the quarterback position.
"It's something that we're definitely going to continue to explore each week, if it's conducive; it has been successful for us, and I could see things continuing each week that way."
With Philly largely struggling to move the ball through traditional avenues, with running back Miles Sanders once again banged up, with seemingly half the wide receiver corps still injured, and with Wentz seemingly regressing in his fifth NFL season, it makes some sense for the Eagles to try to get something going with Hurts. But if he keeps getting on the field and Wentz keeps not producing, eventually, the question is going to be whether or not we'll see Hurts under center on a full-time basis. We're not at that point yet, but unless things turn around for the offense, we could be getting there before the end of the season.