I am not one to shy away from admitting when I am wrong. But this case seems particularly egregious. Over the off-season, there were rumors that The Eagles were in on a possible Russell Wilson trade. And I, along with many others, was fully on board with trading for the former Seahawks QB. And why not? He was one of the best QBs in the league at the time. Sure he was no longer young, but he is still squarely in the age range where many QBS strive. And at the time Jalen Hurts was still a large question mark. It seemed like common sense to add such a skilled Qb if you could.
But man I was wrong. Very wrong. Embarrassingly wrong. It may be the most wrong I have ever been. And that is saying something. Not just for wanting Russell Wilson, but for wanting to move on from Jalen Hurts. Now it is Jalen Hurts who is the MVP candidate, and Russell Wilson has huge question marks above his head.
Wilson has been terrible. And since the NFL has so graciously put the Broncos on National TV 3 times already, we have all seen it for ourselves. His timing is off, his accuracy is off, and he is making some incredibly dumb decisions. His team is now 2-3, and it feels even worse than that. We are already seeing the cracks form in that locker room just 5 games in. KJ Hamler was justifiably upset when Wilson missed him when he was wide open in the end zone with a chance to win the game. It would have been an easy TD. And Wilson never even looked his way. And Hamler reacted by slamming his helmet on the field. Can you blame him?
KJ Hamler told our @JamesPalmerTV that he "could have walked in [to the endzone]."@SteveSmithSr89 breaks down the final play of #TNF pic.twitter.com/E8HZyvmyPT— NFL GameDay (@NFLGameDay) October 7, 2022
It is a mess in Denver. And a large amount of the blame lies firmly on Russell Wilson’s back. He has had issues with teammates in the locker room in the past, and the slow start in Denver is bringing up those issues again. Wilson appears to have a hard time connecting with his teammates. His poor play only amplifies that issue. And it now seems like the issues in Seattle was more his fault than it was anyone else’s. Because Seattle now seems to be exceeding expectations, while Denver underachieves. If the Eagles had traded for him, it would have been a disaster.
Meanwhile, Jalen Hurts looks like one of the best QBs in the league. Not just on the field, but off it. He is almost the anti-Russel Wilson. His teammates adore him. Hurts is everything you want in a franchise QB. His comments in interviews may be a bit boring. But unless you are doing my job and need to find interesting sound bites, no one truly cares about that. When he isn’t speaking at a podium or with a camera in his face, the dynamic is much different. He can inspire his teammates. They listen to what he has to say. And that is all that really matters. If the trade-off is that his answers are boring on camera, we will all take that.
The only question coming into this season was his arm talent. Last year he looked like Wilson does now. Missing guys who are open, not getting the ball out on time, and bailing on plays. But now? He is a threat to throw the ball before he is a threat to run. His passing has been perfect. Does he have the most talented arm in the NFL? No. But he is making all the throws. And he isn’t making any mistakes. There were knocks on his arm strength, but this year he is one of the best QBs on passes over 25 yards. Everything is going well for him so far. And he is doing it on a consistent basis.
So consider this my mea culpa. I was wrong. About Russel Wilson, and about Jalen Hurts. Keeping Jalen Hurts, and giving him that opportunity to grow, was now clearly the right choice. And if they did what I wanted them to do, it would look like a disaster right now.