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Darius Slay compares Jalen Hurts to a young Russell Wilson: 'They're both the same type of player'


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Darius Slay compares Jalen Hurts to a young Russell Wilson: 'They're both the same type of player'

Slay was a guest on 'All Things Covered' and discussed Jalen Hurts and the Eagles season

Jeff Kerr
By Jeff Kerr


Even as the Philadelphia Eagles are in a playoff race despite the franchise dubbing 2021 as a transition year, questions still remain on whether Jalen Hurts can be the franchise quarterback past this season. Through 16 starts, the verdict isn't out on Hurts -- who is coming off one of the worst games of his career in Sunday's loss to the New York Giants

Eagles cornerback Darius Slay sees immense potential in Hurts and doesn't appear to want the franchise to give up on the second-year quarterback so easily. Slay was a guest on the CBS Sports' "All Things Covered" podcast with Bryant McFadden and Patrick Peterson this week, comparing Hurts to a superstar quarterback the Eagles have been linked to at various points this season.  

"He can be real good. I don't like to compare people too much, but he can be like Russell Wilson," Slay said. "They both were baseball players and Russ has a stronger arm for sure -- but (he) was young and behind a great defense and making all the right reads and all the right checks. In year two when they won the Super Bowl, you watched how he played. They handed the ball off, gave to to Marshawn for 120, 130 (yards). 

"You watch how we play now. We're averaging 200 yards per game for the past five games. I feel like they're both the same type of player and Russell kind of evolved as a passer -- and that's what (Seattle) had to lean on because Marshawn was gone.

"The Eagles still have a young core, so Hurts can keep learning on the go. And the Eagles can keep running, just like Russell did (in Seattle)."

Philadelphia's running game has been the best in the NFL thanks to Hurts, who leads the team with 695 rushing yards and eight rushing touchdowns, averaging 5.7 yards per carry. Hurts leads all players in explosive plays in the NFL (85) and ranks eighth in total offense with 3,130 yards. Hurts has recorded 50 rushing yards in six consecutive games, tying Randall Cunningham for the longest streak by a quarterback in franchise history. 

Hurts' passing numbers aren't as dominant as his rushing totals. Hurts has completed 60.1% of his passes for 2,435 yards with 13 touchdowns and eight interceptions (83.9 rating). Of the 34 qualified quarterbacks, Hurts is 28th in completion percentage, 23rd in touchdown percentage (3.7%), 18th in interception percentage (2.3%), 23rd in yards per attempt (6.9), and 28th in passer rating. 

"He lacks no confidence," Slay said. "He's going to have the same mindset to try and go out and dominate a guy and try to be the best player he can to try and help this team win. There aren't too many people in this building that can be a leader (like him) this early (in their career). 

"He's vocal, he works hard, and he knows what to say to a team to get them going. He has the mindset that gets players to go 'dang I want to run through a wall for you.' He does a good job with that." 

If the Eagles do decide to go with Hurts past this season, Slay's on board with the decision. With three first-round draft picks coming in 2022, the Eagles can build around their quarterback and give him another season to grow in the offense. There's little reason to make a brash decision on a starting quarterback based on a small sample size. 


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i’m not so sure about the comparison. i remember Wilson in his early days at NC State and his talent level as a passer was deadly. even then he possessed field awareness and accuracy to go along with his mobility. i couldn’t believe it when Tom O’Brien pretty much dismissed him from the team when Wilson wanted to pursue off season baseball, but still play out his senior season at NCSU. their loss was Wisconsin’s gain.

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