PHILADELPHIA — Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts stumbled as he rose to his feet and limped badly to the sideline following a direct hit to his injured left knee late in the first half against the Dallas Cowboys.
He left for the locker room before time expired in the second quarter, but returned to help the Eagles to a pivotal 28-23 win over the Dallas Cowboys, lifting Philadelphia to 8-1 heading into its Week 10 bye.
“It was a gritty win, it was a tough win,” Hurts said. “Much respect to that team. Always very competitive and have great players. But I don’t think the bye week could come at a better time.”
Hurts has been dealing with knee pain for several weeks. He has worn a brace on that left leg in the past three games. With the Eagles facing a second-and-4 with 34 seconds remaining in the second quarter, Dallas defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence pierced the backfield and hit Hurts square on the left knee before Micah Parsons sacked him.
Hurts stayed on the ground for a moment and labored to stand up before finally managing to make his way off the field.
“I was doubtful,” left tackle Jordan Mailata said. “I was like, ‘Damn, this is going to be a long night, especially if QB1 is out.’ We have that next man mentality for sure, we trust Marcus [Mariota], but you don’t want to get to that position where you have to rely on your QB2. Thank God he’s a warrior, because he played through it.”
On the first possession of the second half, Hurts scrambled for a first down on third-and-2 to extend the drive, which he capped with a 29-yard touchdown pass to DeVonta Smith that put the Eagles ahead 21-17. He ended with 10 rushes for 36 yards and a score and went 17-of-23 passing for 207 yards and two touchdowns.
The Eagles stopped Dallas at the 4-yard line as time expired to hold on. The win dropped the Cowboys to 5-3, giving Philly some breathing room in the NFC East.
“I don’t like it being that way,” Hurts said of his teammates getting a boost by seeing him play through pain. “I’d love to be all good. But I’d do anything for this city and for my teammates. Simply put, whatever it takes. I’m just happy we were able to gut out this win. We showed so much resilience.”
First appeared on www.espn.com