Dynasty Dud? Jalen Hurts
I've been working on my dynasty rankings, and I wanted to create something besides just rankings. I wanted to create something that gives more context to the rankings to show how I landed at a particular spot with a player. Like, why is Mahomes your number 1 quarterback. Why are you lower than most on Barkley, etc. Otherwise it just feels like a gut call in my opinion. So, I came up with a system for doing just that. It's not fully complete yet, but it's getting there. It's something I've been working on ever since the season ended a month ago. It's essentially a rating system for each player. There are a number of categories and each of those categories for each player gets a score on a scale from 1-10. It's different for each position. For quarterback I currently have TALENT, WEAPONS, COACH SCHEME, OFFENSIVE LINE, and AGE. I may add more, but that's currently what I have. It's also weighted higher for categories like talent, and less so for categories like coach scheme. Patrick Mahomes for example scores very high on the scale for obvious reasons. He is young, has the talent and has the coach scheme, weapons and offensive line to help make him an elite dynasty asset. He checks all the boxes. As I've been working through this, it's been rather eye-opening. Some players I "was" high on do not score as well as I would have expected and that will be reflected in my dynasty guide.
One player I have been really high on is Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts. This article is assuming the Eagles trade Carson Wentz. I don't know if that will happen, and if it does not, then obviously much of what I'm about to write will be moot, but let's roll with it. He looked great replacing Wentz and was a high end QB1 over the last month of the season. He averaged more rushing yards during that stretch than Lamar Jackson, and he likely won people in 2QB/Superflex leagues some championships. His 24.5 points per game were good for the QB5, right behind Josh Allen. However, as I work through these dynasty rankings, he has some serious red flags that give me pause.
I was high on Hurts last offseason due to his athleticism (4.59 40-yard dash | 95th percentile) his college QBR, (89.7 | 95th percentile) and his breakout age of 18.1 (100th percentile). Getting drafted by the Eagles was a total buzz kill, but it didn't stop me from drafting him in my dynasty league. My thought was, the Eagles wouldn't draft a quarterback if they didn't have some concerns about Wentz, whether it be from a performance or health standpoint.
Well, Wentz played horribly and Hurts finally got the nod. He started the last 4 games of the season and tore it up from a fantasy standpoint, as mentioned above. However, from a real life standpoint, his passing numbers are concerning. His total QBR of 46 ranked 31st just behind Cam Newton. His completion percentage of 52% ranked 51st among quarterbacks with at least 75 attempts. Wentz wasn't much better at 57%, which is another concern....his offensive line and surrounding talent. Once one of the better o-lines in the league, the Eagles offensive line dropped off big time in 2020, giving up a league high 65 sacks. To show how bad it was, the 2nd worst teams, Washington and Houston gave up 50 sacks. Offensive line play that bad can kill a quarterbacks ability to make plays.
As for Hurts weapons...they are some of the worst in the league. He has serviceable tight ends in Zach Ertz and Dallas Goedert, and one of the better running backs in the league, Miles Sanders. His receivers however leave plenty to be desired. The best receiver on the Eagles this past year was former Lions 6th round pick Travis Fulgham. Hopefully Jalen Reagor can turn into something, but it's hard to tell so far with him being injured for the majority of the season. All in all, it's not a great roster to build around your quarterback.
The coaching scheme should be similar given that new head coach Nick Sirianni comes from Indianapolis and they ran similar play calling to the Eagles. So for me, it comes down to the o-line and the weapons, and both are not great. On top of that, Hurts didn't play well either. His dynasty score came in right around a 3.5. Which is actually the same as teammate Carson Wentz, ranking both of them right around the QB14 for me. Hurts is a rookie and I fully expect him to improve on some of those numbers if given the opportunity. I'm rooting for him and hope he can turn into something special, but he has a long road ahead, and the Eagles need to do more to put better players around him for him to get to that next level. And given they have the 2nd worst salary cap situation in the league, it's going to be hard to turn that roster around anytime soon.