The Eagles have traded away Carson Wentz, firmly positioning Jalen Hurts atop the depth chart. True, the Eagles "intend to bring in competition for him." But I'm pretty confident that whatever they turn up in free agency or the draft, their best starting option next season will be the quarterback they selected in the second round a year ago. Fantasy teams should be very interested.
As a passer and starting quarterback, Hurts is a fairly unknown commodity. He had a couple of 300-yard passing performances (against bad defenses) in his four starts last season, but was under 170, and with only 1 touchdown, in his other two starts (against good defenses). No one can be certain he's the team's franchise quarterback of the future, or that he'll still be starting the second half of the season. (If Doug Pederson were still around, perhaps Nate Sudfeld would get a long look.)
But as a runner, Hurts is something special. That was clear at both Alabama and Oklahoma, where he had three seasons with over 850 rushing yards and 8-plus touchdowns, including 20 rushing scores as a senior. And it was abundantly clear last season. In his four starts, he rushed for 272 yards; that's 68 yards per game. Over the last decade, that's one of the top 3 rushing averages by any quarterback to make at least 4 starts in a season. The only one better was Lamar Jackson, twice.
|QUARTERBACK RUSHING, 2010-2020|
|Robert Griffin III||2012||15||815||7||54.3|
|Robert Griffin III||2016||5||190||2||38.0|
|Robert Griffin III||2013||13||489||0||37.6|
In the table, rushing numbers are adjusted for several players who had significant rushing contributions in non-starts. So for Lamar Jackson (in 2018) and Taysom Hill last season, their rushing numbers in games started by Joe Flacco and Drew Brees are ditched, as are Hurts' rushing numbers in games started by Wentz.
But any way you slice it, Hurts is going to be a very productive runner. With most fantasy leagues richly rewarding such production, no one should sleep on the potential of him being a valuable player in 2021.