What is behind Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz’s worst season of his NFL career?
Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports
The Philadelphia Eagles finally decided to pull the plug on Carson Wentz this week, opting to start rookie quarterback Jalen Hurts on Sunday against the New Orleans Saints.
Wentz is in the midst of his worst season in the NFL, completing just 57.4% of his passes for 2,620 yards and 16 touchdowns against 15 interceptions. He leads the league in sacks, fumbles and picks.
For what it’s worth, Philadelphia’s issues aren’t entirely his fault. However, the 27-year-old has led the Eagles to a 3-8-1 record and the team could end up finishing with its worst record since 1999.
Now that Eagles head coach Doug Pederson finally has decided to bench Wentz, multiple NFL executives weighed in on what’s wrong with the quarterback this season and why he’s struggling in an interview with Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer.
“They don’t appear to have a plan or identity offensively, and he is struggling, obviously, with decision-making. They don’t have any weapons at WR. Two leading receivers can’t separate. Two good TEs but they have only played four games together. Think they have played with 20 different OL combinations,” one NFL executive told Breer. “With all that said, they have had some success running the ball, but they don’t run the ball much. The old adage is the QB’s best friend is the running game. Wentz looks like his confidence is shot and his teammates can see it, so you wonder how much buy-in he gets from teammates. Still believe in him as a QB but they have to get more talent around him and buy into the running game. He is pressing and if he doesn’t make the plays they have no shot winning.”
Wentz’s future in Philadelphia is secure for now, but with Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie reportedly frustrated with the team, a number of changes could be in store this offseason, including a switch at quarterback.
A number of talented players could end up being available during the offseason, including Dak Prescott, Cam Newton, Philip Rivers, Mitchell Trubisky, Jacoby Brissett and Tyrod Taylor, among others. Any one of those quarterbacks could be better than Wentz, but it remains to be seen whether or not the Eagles believe that to be true.
Wentz won’t become a free agent until 2025, so the team could give him another chance next season, but if he struggles again, he’ll likely be on the chopping block.
Erin Walsh is a Boston sports fan through and through. Although many think Boston sports fans are insufferable, Erin tries to see things from a neutral perspective. Her passion is hockey, and she believes defense wins championships. In addition to covering sports for Yardbarker, she covers Boston sports for NBC Sports Boston. Follow her on Twitter @ewalsh90