Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts did not play much during the team's preseason opener, but when he did take the field, he impressed many. Hurts' performance caught the attention of head coach Nick Sirianni, who had high praise for the 24-year-old after the game.
Discussing Hurts' game, during which he went 6-for-6 for 80 yards and a touchdown, Sirianni commented on the quarterback's ability to extend plays.
"I thought he was great. He made plays in the pocket when he needed to make plays in the pocket and when he needed to escape, he escaped," Sirianni said, via the team's official website. "I think it's interesting; I think it's also to be known that leaving the pocket isn't just something that you see when the protection breaks down. I think that people think like, 'Oh, we left the pocket early, and the protection was good.' Well, sometimes nobody is open. And sometimes the defense calls a good play and it's not a good look in the coverage."
Breaking down Hurts' time leading the offense, the head coach continued, saying, "It's not as easy to say that the protection broke down, so he left, because that's obvious. I think the thing that is not as obvious is, again, what I said, somebody slipped on a route out or the defense played a good coverage and there wasn't anybody open and he's trying to create with a scramble. I thought he did a great job of that."
Sirianni said Hurts is someone who is "unfazed" and does not let any drama around him impact his game, a quality the head coach appreciates.
"It doesn't matter if he threw an interception or I'm screaming in his face; the people in Washington fall out of the stands and almost break his leg, he's pretty unfazed and that's a great quality to have as a quarterback because he's going to be unfazed in the first quarter, he's going to be unfazed in the second quarter, third, fourth. That is a great quality to have in a quarterback."
Overall, the head coach is happy with how things went and likes how his quarterback is looking.
"I thought he played a good football game, first drive, and we'll just look to build on that," Sirianni said.
The Eagles drafted Hurts in the second round of the 2020 draft. After going 9-8 with the team last season, this will be a big year to prove himself on the team and in the league.