Hurts, the former Alabama and Oklahoma QB, was surprisingly selected by the Eagles on Friday. The move was immediately met with questioning due to the fact that Philadelphia already has their franchise QB in Carson Wentz.
However, it wasn't so surprising to a former Eagles QB. Donovan McNabb, who played for Philly from 1999 until 2009, revealed why the team selected Hurts with a high draft pick.
Why? Because of Wentz's mounting injuries.
Via Adam Hermann of NBC Sports Philadelphia:
“I was a little shocked. I mean, we were just talking about Aaron Rodgers, weren't we?
You have to look at it and take into account – I've said it, I said it last year, I said it the year before, and everybody gave me heat. If you continuously get hurt, they're going to look to bring somebody in to step in and fill the void. Carson is one of the top quarterbacks in the league, when he's healthy. But he just hasn't been healthy, over the last couple years, to finish seasons out.
So I like the fact that Jalen Hurts is playing under a West Coast system, where he can learn from Doug, which I learned from Doug in my rookie season. And then we both learned from Andy. This will be a great fit for him, to at least learn under Doug, be able to continue to refine his three-step, five-step, seven-step drop, which he's done throughout this offseason, and knowing, and seeing, obviously, the result of it all. So I'm excited about it.”
There is no doubt Wentz is one of the top quarterbacks in the NFL when healthy. The former top overall draft pick was the leading MVP candidate during the 2017 season when he suffered a torn ACL during Week 14. The Eagles would eventually win the Super Bowl that season with Nick Foles leading the way.
The injuries have continued to plague Wentz in the following seasons. Foles once again started during the Eagles' playoff run in 2018 due to a back injury. Compounding matters even further, Wentz was unable to finish out the team's 2019 playoff loss to the Seattle Seahawks due to a head injury. 40-year-old Josh McCown played the last three quarters of that game.
When putting all of the pieces together, there is no doubt that this is a message to Wentz as he looks to stay healthy for a full season for the first time since 2016.