Jalen Hurts Will Wear Uniform No. 1 as Eagles Play Numbers Game

As QB1, Hurts goes to No. 1, as team hands out new numbers assignments to a few returning players as well as necomers
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Turns out, Carson Wentz will not be wearing the same number as the quarterback who sent him packing from Philadelphia.

Oh, Wentz is staying with his new number in Indianapolis, going from the No. 11 he wore for five seasons with the Eagles, to No. 1 with the Colts. It’s Jalen Hurts who is cashing out on No. 1.

The Eagles’ QB1 is going to be exactly that – number one.

The No. 1 was worn by punter Cameron Johnston for the last three years. Johnston signed with the Texans as a free agent.

The number has only ever before been worn by specialists in team history.

In addition to Johnston, Cody Parkey, Mat McBriar, Gary Anderson, Tony Franklin, Nick Mike-Mayer, and Happy Feller all wore No. 1 previously. 

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The change to Hurts’ number will require a new nickname, at least as far as left tackle Jordan Mailata is concerned. Mailata called Hurts, “deuce,” during the signal-caller's rookie season.

Three other Eagles are switching uniform numbers as well on a Friday in which the organization announced numbers for the newcomers.

There will be new numbers for Craig James, Quez Watkins, and Javon Hargrave.

James goes from No. 39 to No. 31; Watkins from 80 to 16; and Hargrave from 93 to 97.

Other numbers doled out:

WR Khalil Tate will be No. 6.

Quarterback Joe Flacco No. 7, a number worn by free agent quarterback Nate Sudfeld the past few years.

Punter Arryn Siposs will wear No. 8.

Safety Andrew Adams will be No. 21, which was Jalen Mills’ number last year. Mills signed as a free agent with the Patriots.

Safety Anthony Harris will be No. 28.

CB Shakiel Taylor will get No. 36, which was worn by Rudy Ford last year. Ford signed as a free agent with the Lions.

Tight end Tyree Jackson will get No. 80, which was Watkins’ number in 2020.

The uniform changes and the issuing of numbers to the newcomers comes a day after the NFL announced that one rules proposal that will be debated at the owners’ meetings in May is allowing running backs, receivers, tight ends, linebacker, and defensive backs to wear single-digit jersey numbers.

Only four double-digit jerseys remain to be handed out. Of course, one of those that cannot be recycled is the No. 5, which is retired after quarterback Donovan McNabb made it his own.

The Eagles have eight other numbers off-limits due to them being retired: 15 (Steve Van Buren), 20 (Brian Dawkins), 40 (Tom Brookshier), 44 (Pete Retzlaff), 60 (Chuck Bednarik), 70 (Al Wistert), 92 (Reggie White), and 99 (Jerome Brown).

Still, the numbers 2, 3, and 9 are available. Even No. 10 is back on the market after DeSean Jackson left for the Rams after being released.

The No. 9 may be off limits for a bit since it was the number worn by QB Nick Foles when he became a Super Bowl MVP in leading the Eagles to the only Lombardi Trophy in their history back in 2017-18.

With the 2021 NFL Draft coming up at the end of the month, more jersey numbers will be issued sometime in May.

Ed Kracz is the publisher of SI.com’s EagleMaven. Check out the latest Eagles news at www.SI.com/NFL/Eagles and please follow him on Twitter: @kracze.

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