NFL legend, the late and great Al Davis once said “once a Raider, always a Raider”. There’s a familiar vibe around the Philadelphia Eagles organization. Guys come and go. Roster turnover is constant when discussing every professional franchise, but it was hard not to smile when Reggie White and Dick Vermeil hoisted the Vince Lombardi Trophy. It would also, even though he hasn’t been here long, seem strange if we ever saw Jalen Hurts in another jersey.
Truthfully, some guys are mercenaries, and we realize that. Jason Babin isn’t an Eagle, but whether or not they left as heroes or goats (and we don’t mean the latter term in a complimentary sense), we always pay attention to what former Birds are doing. Malcolm Jenkins, a former captain and Super Bowl hero, definitely qualifies.
Malcolm Jenkins throws his support behind Eagles QB Jalen Hurts
These days, there are arguments that the safety position is no longer one of premium importance. Opposing arguments can be made that anyone making that assumption never saw Brian Dawkins or Malcolm Jenkins suit up for an Eagles game.
There will never be another Weapon X, but Jenkins has been the only Bird who has come close to replicating Dawk’s passion and intensity. From 2014 to 2019, Malcolm Jenkins played every defensive snap in every Eagles game except the final regular-season contest during the 2017-2018 campaign, one where the coaching staff decided to rest the starters ahead of Philly’s postseason run to Super Bowl glory. He’s been of tremendous benefit to the Eagles organization and the city of Philadelphia, both on the field and off, so when he talks, admittedly we listen.
Recently, TMZ, as they often do, ran him down for an impromptu Q&A session, one where they took a moment to get his opinion on Jalen Hurts. Here’s what Malcolm had to say on whether or not QB1 is the real deal and the Eagles are a contender.
"I believe (they’re a contender). I think they’re believing in him and I think this is the year (where) they have to prove it, so there’s a lot of pressure, a lot of excitement right now around the team. I think Jalen… This is the year that he’ll step into that role. We’ll see… He’s got everything that he needs. He’s got the leadership. He’s got the ability. He’s got the weapons around him. This is the season where we’re going to see (him take another step)."
Malcolm Jenkins and Jalen Hurts have never been teammates. The former’s final season with the Birds (2019) preceded the latter’s rookie campaign in 2020, but they have been on opposite sidelines. Jenkins’ final two seasons were played for the team that drafted him, the New Orleans Saints, so he’s had a bird’s-eye view of Jalen Hurts’ maturation process (pun intended) on two separate occasions, Week 14 of the 2020 season and Week 11 in 2021.
It’s good to see that, though retired, he’s still keeping an eye on what’s been going on in the City of Brotherly Love. By the looks of things, he also seems to be pulling for the organization that he gave blood, sweat, and tears for six seasons. We aren’t surprised. The Eagles fan base has followed him and is forever indebted to him for his commitment and his contribution.
We’re glad he feels the same way, but then again, we aren’t surprised. Again, once you’re an Eagle, you’re always an Eagle (for the most part). Naturally, we can all think of a few former players that probably won’t get an invite to a few future reunions, but we expect to see Malcolm hanging around Lincoln Financial Field or the NovaCare Complex sometime soon.