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‘Bird on a Tree Stock’: Eagles QB Jalen Hurts Responds to Criticism


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‘Bird on a Tree Stock’: Eagles QB Jalen Hurts Responds to Criticism

  • Updated Jul 7, 2021 at 6:08pm
Jalen Hurts

Getty:  New Eagles starter Jalen Hurts still hasn't been given a full vote of confidence from the Eagles front office.

The king of analogies was back in the laboratory last week. Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts described how he has been blocking out the noise during a visit to Alabama where he hosted a youth football camp.

Yes, Hurts has heard the doubters but they might as well be "birds on the tree stock.” Hurts sat down with WVTM 13 reporter Rick Karle to touch on his commitment to special-needs children and the football season ahead, presumably his first one as a starter in the NFL. The calm, confident 22-year-old was asked about playing in the pressure cooker that is Philly. And how to avoid listening to criticism. A smiling Hurts referenced the warbler you never pay attention to.

"It’s a deal where it’s something that I want to prove to myself. I know what I can do. I know who I am,” Hurts told Karle. "I know the player I can be, so it’s about me going out there and doing what I say I’m going to do. Anybody else saying whatever, it doesn’t really pertain to me. It’s like a bird on the tree stock, on the log — you see him, you hear him, but you ain’t really worried about it.”

Remember, Hurts went through the wringer and back during his three-year stay in Tuscaloosa. From starter to bench in the National Championship Game, all with that trademark smile on his face.

"Everything that I’ve gone through has made me who I am,” Hurts said. "And I always say that. And I hold true to that and you learn. You live and you learn.”

Hurts Loving Energy of Philly Faithful

Hurts also touched on how excited he was to see and feel the energy of the Philly faithful. He was lucky enough to sit courtside at a Sixers game after fans were allowed back in the Wells Fargo Center. The dual-threat quarterback never got to experience coming out of the tunnel at Lincoln Financial Field due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Seeing those Sixers fans got him pumped and excited.

"I went to that Sixers game very recently and the energy was crazy,” Hurts said. "Very crazy. The enthusiasm in there, the passion, seeping — seeping throughout the whole entire arena. It was great to see. Obviously, [the Sixers] came up short but the energy … I’m excited to see that in the Linc.”

As far as the 2021 campaign goes for the Eagles, well, Hurts thinks those boys in midnight green might shock the world.

"We good, we good,” Hurts said. "I think with the things we’ve been able to do this offseason, the work we’ve put in, I think it could be a special one.”

Top-10 Fantasy QB on Eagles’ Roster?

Most of the offseason buzz has been negative toward Hurts. NBC Sports’ Chris Simms left him off a list of the Top-40 quarterbacks in the NFL, while Pro Football Focus ranked him as the second-worst starter in football. Yikes.

Well, the fantasy football experts at Pro Football Focus apparently view Hurts a bit differently than their colleagues on the statistical side of the building. They put him No. 8, one spot ahead of reigning NFL MVP and future Hall of Famer Aaron Rodgers. Go figure


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I wonder if the blocking out the noise is something Wentz was never able to manage. Hurts has been in the national spotlight, Wentz never was really in the national yammering media until around draft day and when he started getting negative coverage it got to him. Hurts may be able to deal with the Philly media, Wentz may be better off where he is now.

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