The NY Giants’ defense faces a unique and potentially dangerous challenge when Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts is on the field
When the NY Giants visit the Eagles tonight, they’re likely to face some creative sets and play calls featuring Philadelphia second round pick Jalen Hurts. The former Oklahoma Sooners quarterback featured heavily in a couple of drives in Philadelphia’s loss to Baltimore last week.
The Eagles were dealing with a slew of injuries on offense, in particular at offensive line, wide receiver and tight end. As a result, they hadn’t moved the ball much at all, and needed a spark. In the first five games of the year, Hurts had only been featured occasionally. That changed Sunday, as the Eagles used several packages to take advantage of the multi-faceted weapon.
“He obviously brings that extra dynamic,” said Giants safety Jabrill Peppers. “Obviously, with his athleticism, running and throwing, he’s a smart guy back there that can make the throws to beat you. We definitely need to be on high alert.”
A lot of people around the league scratched their heads when the Eagles selected Hurts so high in the draft, given their other needs and apparent franchise quarterback Carson Wentz. Was Hurts to be a Taysom Hill type weapon? Did the franchise not trust Wentz? While the second question may have appeared open at some points this season, the first question is a clear yes.
“I think of like a Taysom Hill-type,” said NY Giants safety Logan Ryan. “Some variety to their packages, we know he can throw the ball well. We know he can run it, he’s a strong runner.”
The Eagles have lined Hurts up around the formation, while trying to catch opposing defenses off guard. “You have to be very aware of how they get him on the field,” said Giants head coach Joe Judge. “A lot of times they like to sneak him on there late and kind of try and see if you can make your defensive call. All of the sudden, okay we have a different quarterback or both their quarterbacks out there. You have to be aware of how they’re doing things.”
Judge added that communication and awareness will be critical for the New York defense. Let’s take a look at some of the things the NY Giants defense can expect to see.