NFL

'He's a freak' - Sirianni refuses to rule out Hurts against Cowboys despite shoulder sprain

By Sports Desk December 20, 2022

Philadelphia Eagles head coach Nick Sirianni has refused to rule out quarterback Jalen Hurts from playing in Saturday's blockbuster with the Dallas Cowboys despite a sprained right shoulder.

Hurts injured his throwing shoulder late in the third quarter of the Eagles' 25-20 win over the Chicago Bears but was able to finish the game.

Sirianni said the team will prepare Hurts and backup QB Gardner Minshew to play against the Cowboys. He also declined to put any timeline on Hurts' injury.

"I don't put anything past Jalen Hurts, as far as his mental and physical toughness, so there's a chance he could play this week," Sirianni told reporters.

"He is one of the toughest guys I know, and he heals fast — he's a freak. His body is not like, pardon me, yours or mine."

Hurts has been pivotal to the Eagles' sensational 13-1 season and is one of the leading candidates for league MVP with career highs of 3,472 passing yards, 22 passing touchdowns and 13 rushing TDs. The 24-year-old also ranks fourth in the NFL in quarterback rating (104.6).

Sirianni said Hurts' availability was about the injury healing, rather than pain tolerance.

"He’s an unbelievable competitor, [has] unbelievable toughness, which is why every time there's a question about Jalen, the first thing that you get, regardless of how he’s playing or whatnot, is about his leadership ability and his toughness both mentally and physically," he said.

"So, it'll be more about the healing with Jalen than it will be about the pain, because he can play through anything."

Either way, Sirianni was bullish in 26-year-old Minshew's ability to cover Hurts, should be deemed unavailable.

Minshew spent two seasons with the Jacksonville Jaguars before moving to the Eagles in 2021, where he has had limited opportunities, playing only seven times, with only two starts.

"He's what you want out of your backup quarterback, to be ready with limited reps," he said.

"Now, we're able to do things differently here, then I think in most places I've been — we take a lot of time, we have a lot of developmental reps."

Saturday's game sees the Eagles take on the 10-4 Cowboys, who allowed a season-high 40 points against the Jaguars in Week 15.

Cowboys QB Dak Prescott is also under some pressure, having thrown two interceptions in the overtime loss to the Jags.

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