Jalen Hurts is 'going to get better,' Nick Sirianni says

ByTim McManus ESPN logo
Tuesday, February 27, 2024

Philadelphia Eagles coach Nick Sirianni showed support for Jalen Hurts and his leadership style after the quarterback's approach came under scrutiny following a 1-6 close to the 2023 season.

"There is not a book written on, 'this is how you lead.' People lead in different ways," Sirianni said from the scouting combine in Indianapolis on Tuesday. "One thing I learned early in leadership is you have to be yourself because if you're trying to be somebody you're not when you lead, that gets seen through."

Reports surfaced at the end of the year that members of the organization wanted Hurts to be more of a vocal leader and to open up more. Much has been made of his stoic demeanor, which can come off as detached, particularly on the sidelines on game day.

Hurts noted on locker clean-out day following the Eagles' playoff loss to the Bucs that some of the traits he was lauded for during the 2022 season, when he finished second in MVP voting and led the team to an appearance in Super Bowl LVII, was now a source of criticism. Still, he allowed that "every year demands a new version of a person" and that the experiences from last season will lead to growth.

"It's not just Jalen, it's not just me; we had a fall-off as a team those last six weeks that we all need to get better from," Sirianni said. "But Jalen's played some really outstanding football. Here's what I know about Jalen: Whatever we see that he needs to work on or he sees that he needs to work on, he's going to get better at that because he puts everything he has into it."

Hurts' top target, receiver A.J. Brown, has also been a popular topic in Philadelphia, most recently for his call in to radio station 94 WIP in which he called rumors of friction between him and Hurts "total B.S." and pushed back on various reports in the name of "taking up for my teammates."

"A.J., not only is he one of the best players I've ever been around, he's also one of the best leaders, and he's going to do anything he can do to stick up for his teammates," Sirianni said. "That's why he wears a 'C' on his chest."

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