Philadelphia Eagles QB Jalen Hurts is going to push to play in Week 17 vs. the New Orleans Saints, per NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport. The Eagles are coming off a 40-34 loss to the Dallas Cowboys on Saturday in Week 16. It gives the Cowboys an outside shot of winning the division and clinching the No. 1 overall seed. Philly will try and get Hurts back so the team can clinch the top seed in the NFC with a win.
With Hurts out in Week 16, Gardner Minshew filled in admirably, giving the Eagles a chance to win on the road in a tough matchup. Minshew completed 24/40 passes for 335 yards, two TDs and two INTs. Turnovers killed the Eagles; Minshew threw one of his picks with the game tied 34-34 in the fourth and RB Miles Sanders fumbled late in the game as well. Still, at one point the Eagles were up 27-17 and in control of the game with Minshew. The defense wasn’t able to stop Dallas.
Can the Eagles get by with Minshew at QB in Week 17 vs. the Saints? Absolutely. The offense didn’t miss a beat and while the turnovers were back-breaking, the defense giving up 40 points was less than ideal. This week proved that the Eagles can operate without Hurts and be very competitive. The Saints’ offense is below average, so as long as Philly can put up points, getting by New Orleans shouldn’t be an issue. That’s regardless if Hurts or Minshew starts.
Obviously we don’t have lines for Week 17’s matchup on DraftKings Sportsbook as we await the status of Hurts. The Eagles should be favored and it could be close to a TD spread with Philly at home. If Hurts is good to play, we have to see what shape he’s in, which will be difficult. You’d think the Eagles push for Hurts to play to give off that illusion, which could throw the Saints off in preparation.
It’s going to be tricky to approach this situation if you’re in your fantasy football championship. If Hurts is playing, you’ve got to think the Eagles aren’t worried about re-injury and he won’t be held back at all. The problem is it’s football. Hurts could take off and land hard on the shoulder and next thing you know Minshew is in. It may be a better scenario if Hurts is ruled out again and you can either play Minshew or use another option. As for skill position players, none of them were impacted much by Minshew playing in Week 16. A.J. Brown, Sanders, Dallas Goedert and DeVonta Smith were all solid.