You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Why Eagles’ Jalen Hurts’ meetings with defensive coach have been important for his development

NJ.com logo NJ.com 8/10/2022 Chris Franklin, nj.com
Philadelphia Eagles WR Keric Wheatfall (38) catches a pass during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022. © Tim Hawk/nj.com/TNS Philadelphia Eagles WR Keric Wheatfall (38) catches a pass during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022.

PHILADELPHIA – As the Eagles third-team offense was working on the four-minute drill during Tuesday’s practice under the intense heat, quarterback Jalen Hurts made his way to the sideline to speak with one of the coaches. It was not to talk to the offensive staff since he had already briefly been debriefed on his practice performance by offensive coordinator Shane Steichen and quarterbacks coach Brian Johnson.

Howie Roseman, Philadelphia Eagles executive vice president and general manager walks the field during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022. © Tim Hawk/nj.com/TNS Howie Roseman, Philadelphia Eagles executive vice president and general manager walks the field during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022.

Hurts was making his way to the coach with the white hat and black sunglasses, the coach who was radioing in plays to stop Hurts and the rest of the offense: Defensive coordinator Jonathan Gannon.

Philadelphia Eagles QB Jalen Hurts (1) runs through a drill during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022. © Tim Hawk/nj.com/TNS Philadelphia Eagles QB Jalen Hurts (1) runs through a drill during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022.

BUY EAGLES TICKETS: STUBHUB, VIVID SEATS, TICKETSMARTER, TICKETMASTER

Philadelphia Eagles WR Keric Wheatfall (38) catches a pass during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022. © Tim Hawk/nj.com/TNS Philadelphia Eagles WR Keric Wheatfall (38) catches a pass during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022.

Hurts and Gannon were going over a series of plays, sharing intel on what the two had seen on the field during their matchup. After practice, Hurts explained why the get-togethers with Gannon have been helpful for him improving his game and for the defense to get better.

Philadelphia Eagles WR Quez Watkins (16) runs a route during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022. © Tim Hawk/nj.com/TNS Philadelphia Eagles WR Quez Watkins (16) runs a route during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022.

“I think it’s very important to have a relationship with the defensive coordinator,” Hurts said. “I help him see the game how I see the defense, and I ask questions to understand what certain patterns are good versus certain coverages, understanding how he sees the game. We always communicate every day at practice and after practice, trying to help each other get better. It has been very helpful.”

Philadelphia Eagles WR A.J. Brown (11) looks around the stadium during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022. © Tim Hawk/nj.com/TNS Philadelphia Eagles WR A.J. Brown (11) looks around the stadium during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022.

Want to bet on the NFL?

Howie Roseman, Philadelphia Eagles executive vice president and general manager walks the field during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022. © Tim Hawk/nj.com/TNS Howie Roseman, Philadelphia Eagles executive vice president and general manager walks the field during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022.

See the best NJ Sports Betting sites

Philadelphia Eagles QB Gardner Minshew (10) runs through a drill during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022. © Tim Hawk/nj.com/TNS Philadelphia Eagles QB Gardner Minshew (10) runs through a drill during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022.

Video: Jalen Hurts talks A.J. Brown, importance of football and teammates in his life (NFL)

The Eagles defense shows a lot of different fronts and coverages during practice, some that will help Hurts feel comfortable when he is leading the offense under center this season. Gannon can also tell his defenders, especially those in the back-seven, what Hurts was scanning in the coverages, allowing them to make adjustments in the areas that another quarterback could exploit.

Philadelphia Eagles CB Tay Gowan (36) waves to the fans during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022. © Tim Hawk/nj.com/TNS Philadelphia Eagles CB Tay Gowan (36) waves to the fans during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022.

One way that Hurts is able to get a read on the defense is through his athleticism. Last season, Hurts added 784 yards on the ground with his 3,144 passing yards. Being a dual-threat quarterback makes it tough for the defense to account for him in the passing game. Last season, some defensive coordinators chose to play more zone to allow the defenders to look back at the line of scrimmage and limit the number of yards he picks up if he scrambles out of the pocket.

Eagles Cheerleaders perform during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022. © Tim Hawk/nj.com/TNS Eagles Cheerleaders perform during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022.

Hurts said he understands that he possesses those athletic traits, stating that he feels he will be able to do that at a higher level this season if he is consistent with both aspects of his game.

Philadelphia Eagles WR Zach Pascal (3) warms up during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022. © Tim Hawk/nj.com/TNS Philadelphia Eagles WR Zach Pascal (3) warms up during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022.

“I think it’s my reality,” Hurts said. “I’m a quarterback that can run, and I can throw it too. At every level, I’ve done both at a high level. For me, it is about taking steps and growing in every area of my game. That’s who I am as a player, and that is what makes me who I am, being dynamic on the field and being feared on both ends. My biggest thing is being consistent and at a high level and being effective in both the rushing game and the passing game.”

Philadelphia Eagles QB Reid Sinnett(13) and QB Gardner Minshew (10) warm up during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022. © Tim Hawk/nj.com/TNS Philadelphia Eagles QB Reid Sinnett(13) and QB Gardner Minshew (10) warm up during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022.

Thank you for relying on us to provide the journalism you can trust. Please consider supporting us with a subscription.

Philadelphia Eagles WR Zach Pascal(3) makes a catch during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022. © Tim Hawk/nj.com/TNS Philadelphia Eagles WR Zach Pascal(3) makes a catch during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022.

Chris Franklin may be reached at cfranklin@njadvancemedia.com.

Philadelphia Eagles head coach Nick Sirianni walk on field during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022. © Tim Hawk/nj.com/TNS Philadelphia Eagles head coach Nick Sirianni walk on field during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022.

©2022 Advance Local Media LLC. Visit nj.com. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

Eagles Cheerleaders perform during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022.

Eagles Cheerleaders perform during open practice at Lincoln Financial Field, Sunday, August 7, 2022.
© Tim Hawk/nj.com/TNS
AdChoices
AdChoices

More From NJ.com

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon