Jalen Hurts on DeVonta Smith: He’s self-driven, which helps

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Hurts says bringing in self-driven DeVonta Smith will help originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia

By now you might have known that Jalen Hurts was the Alabama player who hosted DeVonta Smith on his recruiting visit over five years ago.

Hurts on Wednesday shared something about that visit.

Something that shouldn’t be a surprise given what we’ve learned about Smith over the lsat few weeks.

“Usually you want to go on the strip (in Tuscaloosa) … or find something to get into, a party or something like that,” Hurts said about hosting on Wednesday. “His head wasn’t on that. He was trying to work. We were in the indoor (facility) late at night, getting the work in. So I think that shows the mentality he has and I think he’s bringing all of that with him here.”

The Eagles drafted Hurts with the 53rd pick in last year’s draft and Smith at No. 10 this year. The former Alabama teammates form a duo that the Eagles hope can get the Nick Sirianni Era off to a fast start.

Just a day before Hurts had his first Zoom availability of the spring, All-Pro linebacker Darius Leonard was in Indianapolis for Colts OTAs and raved about Smith’s work ethic after the two worked out together in Tampa this offseason.

That’s one thing we’ve learned about Smith since he’s been here. He’s a worker.

“I think about DeVonta and I always tell people the first thing about him, one, the competitor he is,” Hurts said. “Kind of a stoic guy, kind of like myself in a few ways. But he’s self-driven and bringing someone in like that, it helps. It helps, just the presence of him being here.”

Hurts and Smith were teammates at Alabama from 2017-18. But after they went their separate ways, Hurts became a Heisman Trophy finalist with Oklahoma in 2019 and Smith won the award after blossoming into a true star in his final two seasons at Alabama.

A lot has changed since they were teammates, which is why Smith said earlier this offseason that he wouldn’t simply rely on the connection they previously shared.

He wants to work on it. Not that it should come as a surprise.

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