NFC Notes: Jayden Daniels, Jalen Hurts, Lane Johnson, Commanders, Cowboys, Eagles


Commanders RB Austin Ekeler said first-round QB Jayden Daniels is already showing leadership and bouncing a lot of ideas off of him. 

“He’s an absolute stud out there slinging it,” Ekeler said via “I love his leadership that he’s shown early on. You know, he’s texting me about routes, he’s calling me out in practice, ‘Hey, Ek, this is what we need to do on this,’ or ‘What did you see on this choice route?’ He’s got all of the right stuff that I love to see from a quarterback that he’s been bringing out in the first couple weeks that I’ve met him. Looking forward to his growth, and we have a lot of veterans like you mentioned that we brought in to help set the culture.”


Cowboys DC Mike Zimmer isn’t giving up hope on DL Mazi Smith being a great player in the league.

Obviously he was a high draft pick, and I heard that he kinda struggled a little bit last year,” Zimmer said, via PFT. “We’re gonna start with the basics, get him in a good stance, get him using his hands the right way, getting his footwork the right way, and then kinda go from there. . . . We anticipate that he’s gonna be a good player like he was in college.

  • According to Aaron Wilson, Cowboys CB Gareon Conley settled a $100,000 grievance with the Texans regarding arthroscopic surgery on his ankle and a stress fracture in his shin during his time in Houston. 


When appearing on the Rich Eisen Show, Eagles OT Lane Johnson said Jalen Hurts has made an extra effort to bond with all of his teammates and has become a vocal leader of the locker room. 

“Just this offseason, he’s really done a good job of bonding with his teammates,” Johnson said. “I feel like the connection has definitely grown. A really big offseason. The work ethic has never been an issue. Tremendous worker. But, just becoming a more vocal leader and, whenever he speaks, guys listen up.”

As for 2024 being a “prove-it” year for many on Philadelphia’s roster and coaching staff, Johnson said he doesn’t have any doubt that Hurts will produce. 

“Every year is kind of a prove-it deal to everybody, when you’re in that town,” Johnson said. “Jalen’s our guy moving forward. We love him, we respect him, and nobody puts in more work than he does.”

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