With Jalen Hurts set to make his first career NFL start against the Saints on Sunday, Adam Schefter is reporting that backup quarterback, Carson Wentz, remains a part of the Eagles’ plans going forward.
Despite his struggles throughout this season, the Eagles still believe in Wentz, 27, as a player and a person, and they think he can return as the type of standout quarterback he once was, according to team sources.
“None of this changes the belief that people have in Carson,” one team source insisted to ESPN this weekend.
Chris Mortensen reported earlier on Sunday that Hurts is likely to remain the starter for the remainder of the season, allowing Wentz to essentially hit the reset button as he looks to reclaim his status in Philadelphia.
With so many different stories coming out, here are 3 takeaways from the news and a few other scenarios.
Confirming a plan to move on from Wentz would reduce his trade value and make an already difficult scenario almost impossible. Per Ian Rapoport, Wentz would have a list of suitors if he were made available and there are many around the league who are chalking this season up to a bad year.
If Hurts can come in well and give the Eagles the spark they’ve been looking for, he could set up a scenario where Philadelphia gets salary cap relief in 2022 with the trade of Wentz in March, and Howie Roseman gets the wiggle room to rebuild the franchise with his new quarterback on his current rookie deal.
Things will heat up quickly over the next few months with the Eagles needing to make a decision on Carson Wentz by the second day of the 2021 league year. If Wentz is still an Eagle on the third day of the league year, the quarterback’s $22 million base salary for 2022 becomes fully guaranteed and his 2021 roster bonus of $10 million also gets deposited.
If the Eagles move on from Wentz, the organization would be responsible for $33.82 million worth of dead money on the cap, $9.27 million of signing bonus proration, and another $24.55 million of guaranteed money from 2022 to 2024.
The Eagles would not owe Wentz the $10 million roster bonus and his new team would be on the hook for his $25.4 million salary.
The current setup has been a disaster and if the Eagles truly are serious about bringing Wentz back in 2021, can the franchise afford to bring Hurts back as well? Wentz clearly isn’t comfortable with a big-named backup or the prospect of competing for his job in 2021 and then having to again look over his shoulder with an even shorter leash.