Jalen Hurts isn’t interested in silver linings.
Still smarting from the team’s 42-30 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs Sunday at Lincoln Financial Field, the Eagles’ quarterback dismissed any notion that there was reason to focus on the bright side.
“There are no moral victories,” Hurts said.
Hurts had plenty of promising moments, albeit against a porous Kansas City defense, but also had some missed chances and mistakes. He completed 32 of his 48 passing attempts for 387 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions, rebounding from a rocky game against the Dallas Cowboys in which the Eagles offense managed just 11 points.
After the game, Eagles coach Nick Sirianni had high praise for his second-year quarterback’s performance, saying it was up there with the best games he had seen as an assistant coach working alongside signal callers like former Colts quarterback Andrew Luck and former Chargers and Indianapolis quarterback Philip Rivers.
I talked to somebody in [the locker room],” Sirianni said. “I just said, ‘That’s one of the better quarterback performances I’ve seen.’ I’ve been around a lot of good quarterbacks, Philip Rivers and Andrew Luck. [Hurts] battled. He made good decisions with the football. He got out of trouble when there was trouble. He made good checks. He made good reads. That’s the best I’ve seen him in practice. That’s the best I’ve seen him in a game since I’ve been here. Hats off to Jalen, he battled.”
When asked about his coach’s remarks, Hurts shut down the positive spin and instead harped on what he thinks the team needs to do to reverse a three-game losing streak.
“Look, we lost,’ he said. “We lost. We lost the game. We gotta do more, we gotta do better. Here’s what I’ll say: We’ve got every opportunity to learn. Every opportunity, everything that you do, you learn from it. We’re clearly not there as a football team because we lost, but we’re this close. We’re this close, and that’s something that I believe. That’s something that I believe. We have to continue to grow, continue to learn, continue to be one percent better every day. Rent’s been due every day. Continue to clock in and buy into that and believe in that. That’s what it’s going to take.”
The “what if” game can go both ways for Hurts’ showing. He had three touchdown passes taken off the board because of offensive penalties, including a nice deep pass to DeVonta Smith that was brought back because the rookie receiver stepped out of bounds on his route and was called for illegal touching.
On the flip side, Hurts was the beneficiary of an overturned interception ruling after making a dubious throw that hit the turf just before Chiefs cornerback DeAndre Baker could secure it. He made a few errant throws in the end zone, and had a fumble at the end of the first half that cost the team a scoring chance. If the Chiefs’ defensive linemen didn’t mishandle the loose ball, it could’ve been recovered for a significant return.
“We played a good football team out there,” Hurts said. “A [Chiefs] team that many say is generationally one of the best. Great quarterback, great players, all that. But we’ve got great players, too. We have to put that together and we will. We’re not a finished product. ... We’re not a finished product, no player on this team is a finished product, but it’s about believing in that, believing in that and continuing to grow.”
When asked why he believed the Eagles were close to turning things around, Hurts highlighted the unforced errors that doomed them Sunday. The Eagles entered the weekend having committed a league-leading 35 penalties and added nine more Sunday.
“I think we’re close because everything we do, we control it,” Hurts said. “We control the penalties, we control the little things. It’s all magnified in games against good football teams. We’ve played good football teams to this point every game. It all gets magnified. It’s on us to execute and do the things we need to do.”