Eagles' Jalen Hurts on Miles Sanders: 'He's got to get his'

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Jalen Hurts on Miles Sanders: 'He's got to get his' originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia

Jalen Hurts sees it the same way we do.

Miles Sanders has to be a bigger part of things. A much bigger part.

“He’s a pivotal part of this offense, one of the top running backs in the league,” Hurts said Wednesday. “He’s got to get his.”

For Hurts to come out and say Sanders has to get more touches just shows you the absurdity of Sanders’ two-carry, five-touch game against the Cowboys.

That’s the fewest touches of his three-year career and one-third of his career average of 15.1. Sanders has seen his touches drop from 19 in the opener to 14 against the 49ers to 5 on Monday night.

And it makes no sense because he’s as productive as any running back in the league when he does get the ball.

Since entering the NFL in 2019, Sanders is averaging 5.70 yards per touch. Among running backs with at least 300 touches, only Austin Ekeler [6.22] and Christian McCaffrey [5.72] have been more productive.

Sanders carried the ball twice for 27 yards and caught three passes for 28 yards in the Eagles’ 41-21 national TV loss to the Cowboys.

His career previous low for carries was three in October of 2019, when Jordan Howard was the primary ball carrier for a stretch. Even last year, when Doug Pederson seemed to abandon the run every week, Sanders averaged just under 14 carries per game.

Sanders was diplomatic when he spoke Wednesday but did allow this:

“Not necessarily myself, but to have a successful offense you have to run the ball.”

Including a late carry by Kenny Gainwell, Eagles running backs got three carries Monday night, the fewest in a game in the franchise's 88-year history.

“Whatever the coaches call is what I think is best,” Sanders said. “They come up with the game plan and we go out and execute. It’s all about trust and that’s exactly what’s going on. We don’t question the play calling. Whatever’s called in the huddle is what we do and that’s what I truly believe.

“I could say what I think we should do, but I’m not a coach. My job is to do what I’m asked to do at a high level, and that’s what I’m going to do. ...

“It is what it is. I’m here to quiet all that down. I’m not over here saying what you really want me to say. I’m here to quiet all this and it’s onto the next game. All I’m focused on. … I’m not going to sit here ... and talk about what we should have done. What we should have done is win the game. That’s the only thing I’m upset about.”

Sanders is averaging 5.3 yards per carry over the last two years, 3rd-highest in the league among all running backs. So far this year, he’s 30th in the league in both carries and touches.

Head coach and play caller Nick Sirianni, whose offense has scored 11 and 14 points the last two games, admitted Wednesday Sanders needs to get more involved.

“Does he need more than five touches? Of course,” he said. “The way the game went, he didn't get that. There's no doubt we've got to get our playmakers the ball. He's a playmaker. He's shown that he's a playmaker, whether it's in the screen game, whether it's out of the backfield.”

The Eagles are 1-2 with the Chiefs, Panthers, Buccaneers and Raiders coming up. Combined record 9-3.

“Stick together, it’s a long road, we’ve still got a lot of ball left to play,” Sanders said. “We’re not down on anybody on this team. I’m not down on coach.

"I’m just worried about what we’ve got going on in this building and it’s on to the next week, on to Kansas City.”

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