So, here’s a bit of an unexpected gut punch: Jalen Hurts suffered a shoulder sprain during the Philadelphia Eagles’ Week 16 win over the Chicago Bears. This much according to several reports, including one from NFL Insider Adam Schefter.
The good news, if you want to call it that, is that NFL Network is reporting that Hurts’ injury “is not considered long-term.” But Hurts could miss two of the Eagles’ final three games, according to The Inquirer’s Jeff McLane.
There was some sense of bad news coming after DraftKing’s Sportsbook moved the Eagles-Cowboys spread from Dallas favored by 1.5 points to being favored by 6 points before an announcement. They also moved the MVP odds back to Patrick Mahomes being favored over Hurts. Vegas always knows.
My BGN Radio co-host Jimmy Kempski was the first to report that Hurts underwent X-rays after a game in which he ran 17 times and took a number of big hits. Reports indicate it was the third quarter where Trevis Gipson drove him to the ground that caused the injury. Hurts was obviously able to finish the game and lead the Eagles to their 13th win of the season. Kudos to him for toughing it out.
#Eagles run a version of this inside zone where the tight end blocks the backside defender and Jalen reads the defender at the next level (and usually gives off as a result). Yesterday they went with much more of this pure reading variant with the edge (99) unblocked.
— Deniz Selman (@denizselman33) 19 December 2022
Turns out the Eagles getting the job done against the Bears combined with the Cowboys blowing a 17-point lead to lose was pretty significant. The Birds are in a spot where they can clinch the No. 1 seed in the NFC playoffs with just one more win over their final three games.
While not impossible, beating the Cowboys with Eagles backup quarterback Gardner Minshew will be a tall order. He’s one of the better No. 2 QBs in the league, but he’s no Hurts, who has been sensational this season.
It would be ideal if the Eagles can win a game in the next two weeks, allowing Hurts to rest until Philly’s first playoff game in the divisional round. So much is possible as the Eagles host the New Orleans Saints after playing the Cowboys.
Still, it’s a bummer that Hurts is going to miss time. It takes a lot of juice out of the Dallas matchup, although it will now be fun if the Eagles can pull off the upset on Christmas Eve. That likely ends his MVP candidacy. It also raises questions about whether Hurts will truly be healed and/or prone to further injury when he returns at some point.
For now, it’s good to know that it could have been a lot worse and that Hurts isn’t out this season. But the Eagles’ road to finishing the regular season just got a little bumpier.
Jeff McLane originally said the injury was to Hurts’ non-throwing shoulder, but he corrected himself to say it’s actually his throwing shoulder that’s injured.
John Clark says that it is “no doubtHurts will be ready for the playoffs.
I am told there is no doubt:
Jalen Hurts will be ready for the playoffs. I was told that the sprained shoulder is not considered serious.
Jalen’s status for Saturday in Dallas is in doubt.
Source says x-rays were negative. Nothing was destroyed. An MRI diagnosed a sprained right shoulder pic.twitter.com/FlZhjSIM0o
— John Clark (@JClarkNBCS) 19 December 2022