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Thoughts on Jalen Hurts and the Eagles trading Wentz one year later


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Thoughts on Jalen Hurts and the Eagles trading Wentz one year later


One year has passed since the Eagles moved on from Carson Wentz.

What a difference a year makes for not only the Philadelphia Eagles but for the Indianapolis Colts as well. One year ago, both teams were starting over at quarterback, and on February 18th of 2021, the Carson Wentz drama fest would end for the Birds as they shipped their franchise quarterback to the Colts for a third-round draft choice in 2021 and a conditional second-round pick that eventually became a first-rounder.

Wentz held up his end of the bargain, playing 75 percent of the regular-season offensive snaps in 2021. That was a delight to Eagles fans everywhere. Philadelphia now owns three first-round selections in the next NFL Draft.

Originally, the trade was looked at as a win-win for both teams, with Philadelphia getting a fresh start with soon-to-be new head coach Nick Sirianni and quarterback Jalen Hurts. As far as the Colts were concerned, they were giving Frank Reich his guy. The hope was their reunion would transform Wentz back into the MVP candidate he was in 2017.

One year later, it appears that the Colts are ready to move on. Wentz might be looking for another team after failing to get the Colts to the playoffs in a soft AFC South division. Things aren’t perfect in Philly, but Jalen Hurts led his team to the playoffs. That’s more than Carson can say. Here are three thoughts on two quarterbacks that are headed in different directions.


The former Eagles QB continued his Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde play in Indy.

Carson Wentz’s numbers following the 2021-2022 NFL season weren’t horrible. He tossed 27 touchdowns versus only seven interceptions, but numbers don’t often tell the full story. The Colts struggled early in the season (and later on), and Wentz continued the up-and-down play Eagles fans had seen for far too long.

In the Week 5 loss to the Baltimore Ravens, Wentz put up monster numbers (402 yards passing and two touchdowns), and despite Indy’s 1-4 start, the fans weren’t ready to turn on their quarterback just yet.

During the first half of the season, Wentz passed for  2,198 yards and 17 touchdowns while only throwing three interceptions, but in the second half of the season, Wentz’s play declined when the team needed him the most (1,365 passing yards with ten touchdowns versus four interceptions).

Yes, the Colts have the elite running back in Jonathan Taylor, but there were times when his efforts weren’t enough, and Carson didn’t do much to help him.

One of the worst plays of the year for the embattled quarterback came in Week 8’s loss to the Tennessee Titans. The Colts were backed up near the own goal line with 1:26 left in the game. The score was tied at 24, and Wentz sealed his team’s fate with a left-handed pass. Take a look:  CLICK ON LINK TO ARTICLE TO VIEW VIDEO

Week 17 was another low point. A win would earn the Colts a playoff berth. Wentz didn’t offer much. He went 16 for 27, passing for 148 yards and one touchdown.

The loss to the lowly Jacksonville Jaguars came a week later. Wentz stunk up the joint again, going 17 for 29 with 185 passing yards, one touchdown, and one interception. He was sacked six times and lost a fumble. Wentz had an up and down year, as did Jalen Hurts, but the new QB1 in Philadelphia had a much happier end to his regular season.


Hurts inconsistent play leads to the Philadelphia Eagles early struggles

Before the 2021 season began, the Eagles were expected to be one of the worst teams in the NFL by various football experts. After the first two months of the campaign, it appears that they would prove their critics right, and the inconsistent play of Jalen Hurts was a contributing factor to the poor start.

Hurts came out with guns blazing as he went 27 for 35 with 262 passing yards and three touchdowns in a dominating opening-day 32-6 win over the Atlanta Falcons, but losses to the San Francisco 49ers, Dallas Cowboys, and Kansas City Chiefs followed.

Head Coach Nick Sirianni’s game plan to attack through the air wasn’t working, but once the Eagles committed themselves to establishing the ground game, things turned in the second half of the season.

As Sirianni started to incorporate the running game more into the Eagles’ game plan, the offense got rolling. Philly ended the regular season with an 8-5 record in their final 13 games, thrusting the Birds to a mark of 9-8 and a playoff berth. Hurts would rush for 900 yards and nine touchdowns over that span, and even though Philly’s season ended in the Wild Card Round with a 31-15 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, despite some growing pains with Hurts, he had an incredible season running with the ball as he led all quarterbacks in rushing yards (784) and rushing touchdowns (10).

Jalen also set a franchise record for most rushing touchdowns by a quarterback in a single season. So who won this trade? Was it the Colts or the Eagles?


The Philadelphia Eagles won in the Carson Wentz trade

Can you believe it? Howie Roseman pulled off a great trade that worked in the Eagles’ favor. Philadelphia’s general manager gets a lot of criticism for his moves and draft selections ( and rightly so), but this trade could be remembered for a long time as one that got the Birds out of a bad situation and gave them a fresh start.

The Philadelphia Eagles traded a quarterback who seemed to give up on the team (and himself), one who seemingly won’t return to the near-MVP form he reached in 2017. Roseman finagled his way out of paying Wentz that big contract… well, some of it anyway. That freed up some money and after using the third-round pick he acquired in Wentz’s trade to move up into the 10th spot in the first round of last year’s draft, he landed star rookie wide receiver, DeVonta Smith.

The former Heisman Trophy winner is off to a good start (64 receptions for 916 receiving yards and five receiving touchdowns in his rookie season), and as mentioned earlier, he managed to snag another first-rounder in the trade thanks to Wentz playing 75% of Indy’s offensive snaps.

The Colts, on the other hand, didn’t just land a quarterback that failed them, they lost on this trade because after mortgaging some of the future to acquire Frank Reich’s guy, they’re back in the market for a franchise signal-caller. They definitely didn’t get what they paid for.

One can say the story still isn’t done, that the Eagles might move on from Hurts. Some might ask if that can truly be used as ammunition for the ‘Eagles won the trade’ argument, but Hurts was a second-round draft selection that no one expected to start. If he takes the next step, Howie will be seen as being a genius.

Roseman shouldn’t move on from Hurts. Not yet. He should use the Eagles’ draft capital to build up the receiving corps and give Jalen and this Eagles defense some weapons. Philadelphia has a young offense. Hurts has proven he can be the leader that this team needs. Coming off of a playoff season, the future in Philadelphia might be a little brighter than we originally thought.


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There's no doubt in my mind the Eagles made the right choice. Wentz was not going to turn things around here and it seems he's not going to turn his career around anywhere. The Eagles got a first round pick and got him off their books (after last year's monster hit) and the Colts now don't have a first round pick and probably are moving on him him anyway. 

No matter what way you shake it this was a terrible terrible trade for the Colts.

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The Eagles have won every QB trade they have made in the last 2 decades, and this was no different. Wentz is no longer a franchise QB, he hasn't been for a while. He's about to turn 30 will be playing for his 3rd team in 3 years. Even his chosen BFF coach in Reich couldn't save him, and has now given up.

But it's not all bad for Wentz, he got paid and is set for life. I would encourage him to reevaluate his future to see if being a journeyman QB is what he wants.

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