Welcome to Wentz Week – Bleeding Inexperienced Country

It’s handiest two weeks into the NFL season and a few nationwide speaking heads are already screaming from the mountain tops and into their mics proclaiming the Eagles as the most productive workforce within the NFC. Whilst it can be excessive, the Eagles are handiest certainly one of six—amongst 3 within the NFC—within the NFL nonetheless undefeated.

Jalen Hurts is development an MVP season and it doesn’t seem like any person will be capable of prevent the Eagles any time quickly.

Whilst that can be an exaggeration, the Eagles are moment within the NFL in dashing (189.5 yards/sport, at the back of Cleveland’s 200.5), first within the NFL in moderate yards-per-catch (9.1) and, extra importantly, moment in third-down potency (changing 17/30 for 56.7%, at the back of league-leading Buffalo’s 14/23 for 60.9%)—in opposition to two reverse defensive philosophies, one attacking in Detroit, the opposite Minnesota’s soft-zone protection, which the Eagles had solutions for each.

Proper at the back of the Eagles in third-down potency is former Eagle and present Washington Commanders’ quarterback Carson Wentz (14/25, 56%). Wentz and the Commanders also are tied for the league lead in crimson zone potency, changing all 5 in their crimson zone alternatives.

What you’ll most probably listen from Wentz this week is what he spouted when he first joined Washington, which hosts the undefeated Eagles at 1 p.m. this Sunday at FedEx Box, that dealing with his former workforce shall be like “simply every other ballgame.”

It received’t.

It’s going to be Wentz’s non-public Tremendous Bowl.

Although he didn’t play in a single, Wentz is as a lot answerable for the Eagles profitable Tremendous Bowl LII as his back-up Nick Foles, who completed what Wentz began in 2017 earlier than he tore the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in his left knee in Week 14 in Los Angeles.

He has no longer been the similar since.

Nonetheless, maximum Eagles’ fanatics revile Wentz for short of out of Philadelphia in 2020 after going 3-8-1 as a starter, and feeling harassed through the presence of Hurts, a second-round insurance coverage to Wentz on the time, certified through the Eagles’ hefty four-year, $128-million contract extension to him.

In spite of being below his 0.33 training regime, Wentz, who’s 30, nonetheless lacks pocket presence, nonetheless has a penchant for no longer checking right down to his working backs swinging out of the backfield, nonetheless a number of the slowest within the league at getting the ball out below power (2.6 seconds), might nonetheless be proof against onerous training, lacks management abilities, and can nonetheless moderate a blunder or two throughout a sport.

The ones are a number of the the reason why he’s together with his 0.33 workforce in 3 years.

The league thinks he can’t care for power, since via two video games he’s been blitzed greater than any quarterback within the NFL (34 occasions; Patrick Mahomes is No. 2 at 32 occasions; Hurts has been blitzed 22 occasions). However Wentz has additionally thrown for the second-most yards within the league below power (650 yards), at the back of handiest Miami’s rising big name Tua Tagovailoa (739 yards).

Wentz’s very best down this season has been the all-critical 0.33 down, the place he’s finished 17 of 21, for 212 yards and a 148.3 quarterback ranking.

Coming off their 24-7 victory over Minnesota in the house opener Monday night time, the Eagles are large highway favorites this Sunday in Washington. They’re additionally ripe to be ambushed through a vengeful quarterback who felt betrayed through the workforce that drafted him, and through a fanbase that after embraced him earlier than behind-the-curtain traits surfaced that almost all of the fanbase didn’t wish to initially settle for.

The aw-shucks, overgrown-Opie-from-Mayberry regimen has been uncovered. It performed neatly and transformed many within the native and nationwide media into Wentz fanboys. Underneath that, there’s some “Minimize-throat Carson” to him. He must be. He wouldn’t be a viable NFL quarterback if he wasn’t. That’s been his drawback—a reluctance to turn it, as an alternative of cowering in hostile scenarios. So, when Wentz says, “it’s going to be simply every other ballgame,” don’t consider it.

The Eagles will see the most productive model of Carson Wentz this Sunday.

Find it irresistible or no longer, that model used to be beautiful just right 5 years in the past.


Joseph Santoliquito is an award-winning sportswriter primarily based within the Philadelphia house who has written characteristic tales for SI.com, ESPN.com, NFL.com, MLB.com, Deadspin and The Philadelphia Day-to-day Information. In 2006, he used to be nominated for an Emmy Award for a distinct challenge piece for ESPN.com known as “Love at First Beep.” He’s maximum famous for his award-winning ESPN.com characteristic on highschool wrestler A.J. Detwiler in February 2006, which seemed on SportsCenter. In 2015, he used to be elected president of the Boxing Writers Affiliation of The us.

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