Oct 7, 2022 - Sports

Eagles-Cardinals: A Texas-sized showdown in Arizona

Jalen Hurts and Kyler Murray side by sides

Jalen Hurts and Kyler Murray. Photos: Patrick Smith/Getty Images; Grant Halverson/Getty Images

The Sooner the better! That's the hype heading into this weekend's matchup as the undefeated Eagles take on the Kyler Murray-led Cardinals (2-2) in Arizona.

State of play: All eyes are on the teams' QBs, who came close but didn't actually overlap as teammates at the University of Oklahoma.

  • Murray won a Heisman Trophy with the Sooners in 2018, while Jalen Hurts transferred from Alabama to Oklahoma the next year and was runner-up for the Heisman, tossing for nearly 4,000 yards and 32 touchdowns while averaging another 93 rushing yards.
  • Before that, they virtually ran in the same Texas football circles, growing up 300 miles away from each other — Hurts at Channelview High School near Houston and Murray at Allen High School near Dallas, per the Inquirer.

What they're saying: Hurts told reporters this week that he has plenty of admiration for his fellow Sooner.

  • "I've always had a lot of respect for Kyler," Hurts said, per the Inquirer. "Texas is a really big state. It's a football state. I always remember him doing his thing in the DFW in Allen. He won every game in high school; that's very impressive."

Flashback: The last time the Eagles started 4-0 was in 2004, when Donovan McNabb led the team to the Super Bowl in a 24-21 loss to the New England Patriots.

  • That bodes well for the Eagles, as the last undefeated team has reached the Super Bowl 10 times since 2000.

Be smart: People are already speculating about the Eagles possibly joining the 1972 Miami Dolphins as the only squad to produce an undefeated season.

  • Yes, but: Those are sports pundit talking points and they're pretty unlikely.

By the numbers: The Eagles were bolstered last week against Jacksonville by the emergence of running back Miles Sanders, who put up career-highs with 134 rushing yards on 27 carries.

  • He also tied his career-best with two touchdowns on the ground in last Sunday's rain-drenched game at the Linc.

Stat of the week: Murray, who has already tossed 173 passes this year, is on track to throw more passes than any other QB in NFL history, according to ProFootball Sports. Current Los Angeles Rams QB Matthew Stafford set the record of 727 in 2012 with the Detroit Lions.


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