Whenever this disappointing season ends for the Philadelphia Eagles, the big question might not be what the team will do with Carson Wentz, but what Carson Wentz will do.
The once-secure franchise quarterback, who was expected to terrorize the New York Giants in the NFC East for years to come, has seen his job as the No. 1 man under center usurped by rookie Jalen Hurts after a miserable 12 games. He went 3-8-1 as a starter with 16 touchdowns and a league-leading 15 interceptions and career-worsts in completion percentage and quarterback rating.
Suddenly the drafting of Hurts in the second round just a few months ago doesn’t seem so head-scratching, especially after he took the reins of the offense and steered the Eagles to an upset victory over one of the best teams in the NFC East, the New Orleans Saints.
After taking the franchise’s hopes and expectations on his shoulders after moving on from Nick Foles, Wentz is now faced with the distinct possibility of playing second fiddle to Hurts for the rest of the season. Of course, that’s contingent on how well Hurts can play down the stretch.
But if head coach Doug Pederson believes his team’s best chance of sneaking its way to the top of the NFC East is with Hurts, a difficult offseason lays ahead for the Eagles and Wentz.
According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, Wentz is “not interested” in being the Eagles’ backup quarterback moving forward and would want to leave Philadelphia.
Pederson has made it known that the quarterback switch he implemented in the third quarter of Week 13 is not permanent, but the decision to bench Wentz has piqued the interest of other teams looking for a quarterback, per Schefter.
The Eagles have remained steadfast in their view that Wentz is still a big part of their future, especially because they recently awarded him with a $128 million contract.
With that in mind, if Wentz is not in the team’s plans moving forward, the Eagles will have until the second day of the 2021 league year in mid-March to decide his fate with the team. On the third day of the league year, his $10 million roster bonus for 2021 is paid while his $22 million base salary becomes fully guaranteed.
For what it’s worth, at least one New York-area team could be looking for a quarterback this offseason. Sam Darnold’s time with the Jets looks to be up as the chance of drafting Trevor Lawrence first overall becomes more and more likely. Should the unlikely scenario of the Jets winning a game or two down the stretch happen and they lose out on Lawrence, Wentz would be an obvious option to at least inquire about if he’s made available.