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Ella on the Scene: Building a winning culture

Jalen Hurts' numbers have been impressive, all while guiding the Eagles to a 5-0 start.
Jalen Hurts' numbers have been impressive, all while guiding the Eagles to a 5-0 start.

"I don't like hearing 5-0," said quarterback Jalen Hurts following last Sunday's win against the Arizona Cardinals. The focus is going 1-0 every week.

Hurts is keeping everything in perspective as the Birds continue to claw their way through the schedule. Sunday night is set to be big. The Eagles and the Cowboys – a rivalry as good as any. Philly will be rocking. I take you inside the locker room and around the NovaCare Complex as the Birds prepare for the enemies to come to town.

HURTS VS. THE NFL

Hurts is off to a stellar start, playing the best football of his NFL career so far. He has 1,625 total yards, second most in the NFL, and 10 total touchdowns through five games.

How does that compare to the rest of the NFL? Hurts has more rushing touchdowns than Saquon Barkley, Derrick Henry, Lamar Jackson, and Ezekiel Elliott to name a few, he's within the Top 25 in rushing yards, has more passing yards than four-time MVP quarterback Aaron Rodgers, and a higher passer rating than Tom Brady.

Hurts is a do-it-all quarterback and continues to take the league by storm. Sunday night will be a huge test for the second-year starter.

Get an inside look at practice as the Eagles prepare to take on their rival, the Dallas Cowboys, in a Week 6 Sunday Night Football showdown.

ALL EYES WILL BE ON PHILADELPHIA

The lights will be bright at Lincoln Financial Field come Sunday. For some players, this will be their first Eagles-Cowboys experience.

Rookie defensive tackle Jordan Davis joked that it feels a bit like Georgia-Alabama. He admitted he didn't want to say that too loud because his neighbor in the locker room, Josh Jobe, an Alabama guy, might overhear him.

Cornerback James Bradberry is familiar with the competitiveness of the NFC East, having been a New York Giant for two seasons. He's faced the Cowboys on a handful of occasions, but this time feels a little different.

"When I was in New York, really any game we played in the division was a big one. I know especially when we played the Cowboys, it was definitely a big one," said Bradberry, who was with the Giants for two seasons prior to signing with the Eagles in the offseason. "I'm just looking forward to the atmosphere and the stadium. I know this is a big rivalry, it's a big game for both parties, so I'm just looking forward to the atmosphere."

This week on Eagles Game Plan, Eagles legends Mike Quick and Ike Reese reflected on their favorite memory from the historic rivalry.

COLLEGE SUCCESS LEADS TO NFL MATURITY

There are players on this Eagles team that have made it to the top of the mountain in their college careers. They understand the process and what it takes to win. So when they've accomplished a 5-0 start in the NFL, they are poised to keep climbing.

"We're not overly excited about it. We've been there, done that, but not at this level though," Eagles rookie linebacker Nakobe Dean said. Dean won the National Championship last season with the Georgia Bulldogs.

"As far as winning, it's a long season. We know there's a lot more things we need to do this season, there's a lot more things that can happen in the season. So we just take it week by week. We try to be 1-0 each week. We're not trying to be 6-0. We're trying to be 1-0 this week."

Jalen Hurts had a 26-2 record as a starter at Alabama in 2016 and 2017. Wide receiver DeVonta Smith was on that 2017 team. For his part, Smith lost just four games in four years with the Tide. Left guard Landon Dickerson spent two seasons in Tuscaloosa, and in his final year, the team went undefeated and won a National Championship.

Dean was drafted to the Eagles with his best friend from Georgia, defensive tackle Jordan Davis, who says being accustomed to winning creates a championship mentality.

"You know what it takes, you know what it feels like, you know the important stuff. Just go out there, we have that championship mentality," Davis said.

Simple as that, right?

Dean said you just take every week the same, "if we were 5-0 or 0-5."

CRUCIAL CATCH

Sunday will be the Eagles' Crucial Catch game.

Crucial Catch is a league-wide initiative that works to fight cancer through early detection and risk reduction. The American Cancer Society teamed up with the Eagles this week and was a presence at the annual Women's Football Festival.

At their booth on the field, ACS encouraged women to participate in their new campaign, "Hey Philly, Get Screened!" Paula Green, Vice President of Development at the American Cancer Society, said they saw a 90% decrease in screenings during COVID, so the goal is to encourage people to return to screening.

"Part of our job is to raise awareness, part of our job is to let people know – if you're 45 years old, you should go get a colonoscopy," Green said. "So there is no better partner to help us raise brand awareness than the Philadelphia Eagles."

The Eagles also made a $10,000 donation to the American Cancer Society that evening.

WHO WANTS AN EXCLUSIVE EAGLES PIN?

For every home game this season, the Eagles Autism Foundation will be selling 50/50 raffle tickets throughout the stadium. Eagles fans can receive an exclusive Eagles pin for every raffle ticket purchase of $25 or more. Each selling booth will have one of the four available pins at their station.

Can you search the stadium and collect all four pins? Featured this weekend will be a Crucial Catch pin, a Fletcher Cox pin, a Lane Johnson pin, and a Go Birds pin. All proceeds from this initiative benefit the Eagles Autism Foundation and its mission to provide innovative research and care programs for the autism community.

Eagles Autism Foundation
Eagles Autism Foundation

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