What 'List Season' Reveals About Eagles QB

Jalen Hurts is no longer one of the hot names when it comes early MVP talk.
Jan 15, 2024; Tampa, Florida, USA;  Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts (1) throws against
Jan 15, 2024; Tampa, Florida, USA; Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts (1) throws against / Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports
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PHILADELPHIA - There’s plenty to discuss in the NFL between the draft and the opening of training camps this summer with the schedule release, and on-field OTAs and minicamps headlining the substantive.

The passion of football fans always demands more, however, and that void is often filled by what I’ve dubbed “List Season.”

On-air the goal has always been to explain that no list by anyone compiling it is worthy of a Congressional investigation. They are full of personal opinions and biases and are usually not exactly backed by the kind of significant research and testing worthy of peer review.

They are like the New England weather, if you don’t like one wait five minutes for the next.

There are themes, though, and an NFL.com “QB Index” of self-admitted “way-too-early top-10 MVP candidates” under center has Jalen Hurts absent from a top 10 that includes all the obvious candidates that should be ahead of the Eagles’ quarterback as well as some curious projections designed to generate the interest this kind of stuff is created to do. 

The constant you will see throughout this entire "list season" with Hurts is the hit he’s taken due to his performance at the end of the 2023-24 campaign.

Coming off his 2022-23 season in which Hurts led the Eagles to Super Bowl LVII before coming up just short on evergreen MVP frontrunner Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs in the big game, Hurts was as hot as can be on these types of lists.

This year, the personal stock needs redemption after sitting at the controls of one of the ugliest collapses in NFL history and a one-and-done playoff beatdown at Tampa.

"The work comes first," Hurts said this spring. “... I have a standard I want to play to and I want to play to that all the time. Everybody's eager. Everybody's working and just trying to build it."

Hurts’ standing in 2024’s “list season” is meaningless from a tangible standpoint but it does reveal that he has a lot to prove under new offensive coordinator Kellen Moore and quarterback coach Doug Nussmeier, a journey that started with the opening of offseason work in April and will continue with on-field OTAs that begin this week

"I'm excited to work with him,” Hurts said of Moore. “I know they [Moore and Nussmeier] have a history of doing really good things. I'm just all ears. I'm a sponge. I think there's some beauty in that.

"I've always had a desire for growth and development. I think that's allowed me to have these opportunities I have now, being here at this place, and just being able to continue and grow over the years of my career."

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John McMullen

JOHN MCMULLEN

John McMullen is a veteran reporter who has covered the NFL for over two decades. The current NFL insider for JAKIB Media, John is the former NFL Editor for The Sports Network where his syndicated column was featured in over 200 outlets including the Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, and Miami Herald. He was also the national NFL columnist for Today's Pigskin as well as FanRag Sports. McMullen has covered the Eagles on a daily basis since 2016, first for ESPN South Jersey and now for Eagles Today on SI.com's FanNation. You can listen to John, alongside legendary sports-talk host Jody McDonald every morning from 8-10 on ‘Birds 365,” streaming live on YouTube.com. John is also the host of his own show "Extending the Play" on AM1490 in South Jersey and part of 6ABC.com's live postgame show after every Eagles game. You can reach him at jmcmullen44@gmail.com or on Twitter @JFMcMullen