Jalen Hurts wasn’t brought into the NFL under ideal circumstances.
Philadelphia had no idea what direction it was taking as an organization. And it was caught in an area of trying to compete, despite not having the right tools. Nonetheless, when Hurts arrived, he didn’t complain. He went to work.
Part of that mentality resides in how then Eagles coach, and current Jacksonville Jaguares coach, Doug Pederson believed in him. Hurts hasn’t forgotten that.
Recently, Hurts offered his opinion on his former coach, offering praise for his belief that contributed to Hurts’ success.
“I’m very grateful for coach Pederson and the time I spent with him,” said Hurts. “Obviously him taking a chance on me and making me an Eagle is something very important to me.
“I’m glad he’s had the opportunity and he’s doing great so far coaching a really good Jaguars team. I have a lot of respect for him.”
Hurts relationship with a former coach
To Pederson’s credit, he saw something in Hurts before anyone else. And, to this day, Hurts holds him partially responsible for the success he is experiencing now.
Pederson, on the other hand, believes that Hurts always had the ability to play at the level he is now. It was more a matter of getting the opportunity to be the guy in an offense tailor-made for him.
“Everything that you’re seeing now is everything that we saw in him when we drafted him,” said Pederson during a video call with Philly media on Wednesday. “He’s going to defy all odds, that’s just the way his career’s been built.”
Pederson added: “He was the same way… He’s a sponge. He wants to learn. He wants to get better. He’s a professional. He takes it seriously. Those are the things that you want out of your quarterback, out of the leader of your team, so it’s no surprise he’s still doing that.”
Pederson believing in Hurts appears to have made all the difference.
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Feature image via Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports.