Jalen Hurts reflects on doubters, journey to Super Bowl

Jalen hurts can join the rarified air Sunday if he wins the Heads becoming the third quarterback ever to start for a national championship-winning team in college and win one Super Bowl as a starter

The eagles The quarterback’s path to possibly achieving both feats was certainly unusual, if not incredible. He was benched at halftime in the 2017 title game despite leading Alabama to a 12-1 record that season. Tua Tagovailoa led Alabama to a comeback victory that night to win the national title and after the 2018 season, Hurts transferred to Oklahoma.

Five years later, Hurts believes his mindset helped him overcome that rough January night to become a Super Bowl starting quarterback.

“I was going through a really tough time in college, going through things that nobody else was going through,” Hurts said on opening night of the Super Bowl. I knew I was going through it for a reason. That’s what I doubled down on. I believe that faith without works is dead. Therefore, as long as you have faith, you cannot be doing nothing.

“I had a lot of faith and I worked hard at it. I never stopped believing in myself and what I could be. I had unlimited possibilities.”

After a 2019 season that saw him named a Heisman finalist, Hurts was selected by the Eagles in the second round of the 2020 NFL Draft. With Carson Wentz already in town, he wasn’t expected to be a quarterback of the Eagles franchise. That sentiment continued after Wentz was traded after the 2020 season and even through the 2021 season, in which Hurts started and led the Eagles to the playoffs.

Hurts isn’t shy about confronting the opinion that he wasn’t the Eagles’ long-term answer to the quarterback who answered the season.

“It’s something I accept. It’s something I embrace,” Hurts said. “I embraced all the opinions. I embraced all the hate, the doubt. And I didn’t let it define me, and I’m not going to start letting it define me now.”

Hurts’ mindset is part of the reason he’s ready to help make history Sunday. Hurts and Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes will be the first black quarterback to face and start a Super Bowl.

Hurts called it “historic.”

“You think about all the rich history of this game, and to be a part of such a historic event, such a historic moment, it’s special. There have been so many quarterbacks before me, including Pat, he helped set the foundation for me to have -ho. opportunity. Seven African-American quarterbacks starting in this game and now it’s the first time two have gone head-to-head. This is encouraging the next generation of quarterbacks, that 4-5-year-old kid coming back in. Houston , back to Philly, back to Texas, Louisiana and anywhere in the world that no matter what anyone says or may have an opinion about you, you can do it. You can do it too.

“I value the platform I have and I’m sure Pat does too, so we just want to inspire the next people.”

Hurts will actually be the second black quarterback to start a Super Bowl for the Eagles. Donovan McNabb started for Philadelphia in Super Bowl XXXIX against the New England Patriots.

McNabb has mentored Hurts over the years and was the first person to reach out to his father after he was drafted in 2020.

“His influence, his experiences, Mike [Vick’s] experiences, and Randall Cunningham’s experiences and being able to talk to them about some of those things with this city,” Hurts said. “Philadelphia is a very special city and I think that’s something that’s helped me this year “.

Donovan McNabb reached out to Jalen Hurts’ father after he was drafted by the Eagles

Donovan McNabb reached out to Jalen Hurts' father after he was drafted by the Eagles

Donovan McNabb reached out to Jalen Hurts’ father after he was drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles.

Hurts received the respect of those on his side and those on the other side before Super Bowl Sunday.

Eagles head coach Nick Sirianni compared Hurts to Michael Jordan, saying he looks up to someone like the NBA legend and believes Hurts has similar qualities.

“It’s Jalen Hurts’ will to win, it’s Michael Jordan’s will to win, that’s what I compare it to,” Sirianni said. “Michael Jordan is the greatest of all time…but it’s fair [their] will to win I don’t know what Jalen Hurts ceiling is because he continues to set a new standard for what his ceiling could be. In my experience, guys who love football, who are tough, who work every day with the work ethic that he has, they hit their ceiling.”

Eagles running back Miles Sanders explained why he respects Hurts’ leadership skills:

“Even Steven. You can’t really tell if he’s mad or happy. He’s one of those guys where if something crazy happens and you look at him and he’s cool, you’re going to be cool. He shows more than he says. . He talks a lot , don’t get me wrong, but I’m very observant and I have a lot of respect for him. It just shows all his work. It shows. It’s worth it, too.”

Eagles’ Miles Sanders on Jalen Hurts as leader: ‘Shows more than he says’

Eagles' Miles Sanders on Jalen Hurts as leader:

Philadelphia Eagles’ Miles Sanders on Jalen Hurts as a leader and how he shows more than he talks.

On the other hand, Chiefs star defensive tackle Chris Jones is certainly impressed with how Hurts has played this season.

“Jalen Hurts proved this year that he’s one of the best dynamic, dual-threat quarterbacks in this league,” he said. “Behind that offensive line and what AJ Brown and what [DeVonta] Smith as wide receivers, they have been one of the best offenses in the league. That speaks volumes for itself.”

Super Bowl LVIII will take place Sunday at 6:30pm on FOX and the FOX Sports app.

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