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  • Writer's pictureAl Thompson

FOR THE EAGLES TO KNOCK OFF THE CHARGERS, HURTS MAY WANT TO LOOK TO HIS LEFT

The Eagles (3-5) are are 0-3 at the Linc this year. They hope to end that trend against the Chargers (4-3), a team ranked last against the run.



Jalen Hurts is being asked about almost always throwing to his right, Photo by Al Thompson

Is it a stretch to say watching Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts is like watching NASCAR in reverse?


Virtually every turn in the highest level of auto racing in America is to the left. There are wisecracks out there that claim if you have a regular NASCAR race that has 38 drivers entered in a 250-lap race, and all the drivers finish, there will be 38,000 left hand turns made during the contest.


After eight games this season people are starting to think Hurts should binge watch some NASCAR races to see what it’s like to go to the left. Why? If you haven’t noticed virtually every pass the second-year signal-caller throws is to his right.


It has gotten so obvious, Eagles head coach Nick Sirianni if he noticed that the dispersion of his throws are overwhelmingly to the right side. Is that something that he would like to correct? Is that something that he is worried about?


“There are different scenarios of where the reads take you, right?” Sirianni said at his Wednesday press conference. “Sure, we're going to have things designed for different parts of the football field. Without getting too much into it, we want to always do where he excels the most.


“Again, you don't want to do too much so you have a tell to the defense. Again, different reasons bring him to places with the football. There could be something that broke down in the pass play. There could be something with the read that took it away from the middle or the left side. It could be something we're setting up that we don't want to let a good rush happen. We're playing (Chargers DE) Joey Bosa this week, so the play might be designed to one way because Bosa is right there.


“Again, I say all that to say – we don't want to show our cards in anything we do, so we're constantly trying to make sure we're balanced and fit out. There are different reasons why the ball goes to different places.”


Ok. That is as good an explanation you can get on a question on the fly, but is that something he has seen before and had experience with?


“Yeah, I think sometime when you get into again, I don't pay a ton of the attention to a lot of the those stats,” Sirianni said. “If it's going to help us in a certain way, I will. So, I can't say I've paid a lot of attention to that in the past. Or maybe I haven't paid attention to it in the past because it wasn't an issue in the past, right? Or no one has brought up the stat.



Eagles head coach Nick Sirianni says he is not too concerned about Jalen Hurts throwing tendencies. Photo by Al Thompson

The rookie head coach continued.


“But again, in anything we do, run, pass, where the ball is getting completed, who it's getting completed to – again, we want to get the ball to our playmakers,” Sirianni said. “Again, if you're only throwing to DeVonta (Smith), right, or if you’re only throwing to Quez Watkins or if you’re only throwing to Dallas Goedert, teams can get a beat on you.


“We know how smart defensive coordinators are in this league. We know how smart linebackers are in this league. We know how smart defense backs are, defensive lineman, et cetera. And so, we have to do our best to make sure we're balanced in everything we do.”


Hurts said it is natural for a quarterback to play with the side he writes with.


“Passing to the right…you have a lot of tendency for quarterbacks, they go to their dominant hand,” Hurts said. “So sometimes its unfolded that way, and certain times you’re in scramble situations. But in the end, I just try and go out to execute the plays that are called. If something didn't go right or a busted route or whatever it is. You have to you find a way to make it work after that.”


The Eagles ran an astonishing 46 times for 226 yards and four touchdowns against the Detroit Lions last week at Ford Field. The 44-6 win was satisfying, but the Birds are going to have to throw the ball effectively against the Los Angeles Chargers if they want to climb back into the playoff picture.


Hopefully coach and Hurts figure out something different in the direction of throwing passes before defenses starting yelling out loud before each play…”He always goes to his right,” if they aren’t already. *


NOTES: The Eagles are 0-3 at home this season. In years past, a start like that would be unthinkable. But that’s what it is. Hurts was asked about the poor showing at home. The young quarterback brought up the opponents – two, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Kansas City Chiefs - who happen to be that last two Super Bowl champions. The other loss was to the San Francisco 49ers in the home opener.


“I don't think it has anything to do with the arena we're playing in,” Hurts said. “We've failed to beat those good teams that are coming to our house. And that's something we obviously want to change. So we're eager to go out there this Sunday. Go out there and play in front of our fans.” *


Follow Al Thompson on Twitter @thompsoniii

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