PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Jalen Hurts rolled to his right, scampered down the sideline and stutter-stepped to the 5-yard-line, where he was wrapped up by a defender with another in pursuit. Hurts twisted his body, lowered his head, dragged two defenders with him and powered his way in for an adrenaline-filled 26-yard touchdown run that about broke the game open.
Just maybe, or so the Eagles can hope, there are many more plays like that one ahead.
Hurts had 301 total yards in the first half in the breakout game of his young career, finishing with three total touchdowns as he led Philadelphia to a 24-7 win over the Minnesota Vikings on Monday night.
“Big-time performance on a big-time stage,” Eagles coach Nick Sirianni said.
Trying to prove he can play like the best franchise QBs in the NFL, Hurts looked downright unstoppable from the opening drive.
Hurts hit five receivers on 5-for-5 passing — highlighted by a 19-yard strike to A.J. Brown — and finished the drive himself with a 3-yard scoring run. In the opening win against Detroit, Hurts failed to complete a pass on five attempts and the Eagles turned the ball over on downs on the first drive of the game.
Meanwhile in Buffalo, if the Bills are making some sort of loud statement by opening their season with consecutive routs, quarterback Josh Allen isn’t about to raise his voice.
As he did following a 31-10 win over the defending Super Bowl champion Los Angeles Rams, Allen dismissed questions about the message the Bills sent by throttling the Tennessee Titans 41-7 in Buffalo’s home opener on Monday night.
“When we execute how we know we’re supposed to execute, success typically leads to success,” Allen said. “We’re just trying to be the best version of ourselves.”
It made no difference to Allen whether the Bills earned some vindication against an opponent that had defeated them in each of the past two seasons.
“It doesn’t matter who it’s against. Like, that’s a good team that we played,” he said. “For us to go do that was great.”
Allen threw four touchdown passes, including three to Stefon Diggs, and the Bills’ defense did the rest, containing Derrick Henry and the Titans. Buffalo forced four turnovers, including linebacker Matt Milano returning the second of Ryan Tannehill’s two interceptions 43 yards for a touchdown.