The sad truth about the Super Bowl is that while one team will celebrate the victory of a lifetime, another will have their heads bowed as tears flow as they return to the locker room defeated.
There are some, yes, who decide to stay in the field to see the celebration, wanting to feel that pain as a motivating tool. Although Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts didn’t do that, he knows this 38-35 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday night in Arizona will be a life lesson that will carry on.
«I think the beautiful part of it is that everyone experiences different pains and everyone experiences different agonies of life,» he told reporters after the game. «But you decide what you want to learn from him. You decide if you want it to be a teachable moment. I know what I’ll do.»
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Win or lose, Hurts went into this game putting the naysayers to rest. The Eagles had the best regular season record in the NFL and surpassed the New York Giants and San Francisco 49ers to reach this point in the season. And Hurts’ elite play was a big factor.
«I think you want to cherish these moments,» he said. «You want to cherish these moments with the people you come this far with. Your family, your loved ones, your teammates, your peers, everyone you do it with and for. I’m so proud of this team. I am very proud of this team for everything we have been able to overcome. Obviously, we had a big goal at the end that we wanted to achieve and we fell short.»
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It wasn’t for a lack of effort from Hurts, who certainly would have been named Super Bowl MVP had it not been a Chiefs win. He rushed for three touchdowns and a game-tying two-point conversion at 35 apiece, while throwing a 45-yard bomb to AJ Brown in the second quarter for his lone touchdown pass.
Hurts finished with 304 yards on 27-for-38 passing, while rushing for 70 yards on 15 carries.
It’s efforts like this that head coach Nick Sirianni has seen from Hurts all season, so all he could do after the game was remind him how far he’s come this year.
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«I just told him that I was happy for him,» Sirianni said. «It just wasn’t this year and I told him I thought it was the best game I’ve ever played. It wasn’t just this game, it was the whole season where he showed himself to be a special leader, a special player and me.» I’m very glad he’s our quarterback.»
This isn’t the first time Hurts has faced adversity in his football career, and it probably won’t be the last. But as he said, people can let the loss consume them or use it to move on.
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«It’s something that I know will motivate me,» he said.