One of the biggest takeaways of the 2022 NFL Draft is that the Philadelphia Eagles are committed to building around quarterback Jalen Hurts. After being selected in the second round of the 2020 draft, Hurts took over for a struggling Carson Wentz. Philadelphia decided to trade Wentz to the Indianapolis Colts and made Hurts the full-time starter.
In his first season as the Eagles starting quarterback, the team finished the year second behind the Dallas Cowboys in the NFC East and a wild card playoff berth. Unfortunately, the Eagles did not go far during the postseason. They were defeated by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 31-15. In the offseason, many rumors were speculating on the idea of the Eagles making a move to acquire Deshaun Watson from the Houston Texans.
From a football standpoint, the trade would make sense. The Eagles had a ton of assets in draft picks and playmakers on defense. In addition, the Eagles remained committed to building a contending roster around Hurts despite those rumors. On the night of the 2022 NFL Draft, the Eagles give the Tennessee Titans the 18th and 101st overall picks to acquire star wide receiver, A.J. Brown. On the same night, Philadelphia selected Georgia defensive tackle Jordan Davis. In addition, they may have chosen a steal in linebacker Nakobe Dean out of Georgia in the third round.
The former Mississippi wideout also signed a four-year, $100 million contract with the Eagles that includes $57 million guaranteed; sources told ESPN’s Kimberly Martin. The addition of Brown gives Hurts another dynamic playmaker in the passing game. He will be joining second-year wideout and 2021 first-round pick DeVonta Smith in an offense that was predominately built off running the football. According to Stat Muse, the Eagles were the league’s number one ranked rushing attack. Philadelphia averaged 159.7 yards per game.
However, while the Eagles succeeded as the league’s best rushing offense, their passing attack was at the bottom of the NFL. Philadelphia only averaged 210.9 yards per game. However, Hurts and the offense made the most out of the situation. His former Alabama teammate, DeVonta Smith, had a solid rookie campaign when he hauled in 64 receptions for 916 yards and five touchdowns.
As it stands right now, the Eagles’ offense will consist of DeVonta Smith, A.J. Brown, Miles Sanders, Dallas Goedert, Zach Pascal, and Quez Watkins. On paper, a roster with that type of personnel should contend for a division title and possibly a Super Bowl. The NFC is not as strong as it was a few years ago. A team such as the Eagles can quickly ascend to the top.
Within their division, the Cowboys and the Commanders have a ton of question marks heading into the 2022 campaign. Based on the optics right now, the Eagles look better than Washington and Dallas. However, the work has to be done in the field. It will be up to Hurts to make the most out of the situation.
If things do not work out for the Eagles with Hurts under center, they could part ways after this season. When the team gave up picks to the New Orleans Saints, they received an extra first-round selection in the 2023 draft. In total, Philadelphia will have seven draft picks. With a projected six quarterbacks possibly going in the first round, the Eagles may use one of the first-round picks on a signal-caller.
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