By Ty McEliece
If you want to have a successful football team in the NFL, then you need a good quarterback. After losing Donovan McNabb (1999-2009) in his prime, the Eagles have struggled to find their next good field general. Michael Vick (2010-2012) was expected to produce like he did for the Falcons but he didn’t live up to the hype.
Nick Foles (2013-2014) looked promising for a season but then slumped the next. Sam Bradford (2015) played like typical Sam Bradford. Granted both Foles and Bradford of those quarterbacks dealt with college football genius to NFL question mark Chip Kelly, they still didn’t produce like expected.
But now there is Carson Wentz. Wentz was the No. 2 overall pick in the 2016 NFL Draft out of FCS powerhouse North Dakota State. Wentz is 3-1 so far and has good numbers. In 135 attempts, he hasn’t throw an interception and has seven touchdowns.
Wentz did not throw an interception until Week Four. His best game so far is what has probably opened some eyes.
In a matchup with the Steelers Wentz posted a passer rating of 125.9 out of 158.3. He also threw for two touchdowns, 301 yards and 23 completions on 31 attempts against a Steelers team that has played very well in every other game this season. Now an argument can be made that besides the Steelers, Wentz hasn’t really played a good team.
In Week One he played against the Browns (0-5), and in Week Two, he faced the Bears (1-4) – two teams that aren’t usually in playoff contention come December.
In Week Five the Eagles played the Lions (2-3) and lost by a score of 24-23. This is when Wentz finally threw his first interception, which was on the Eagles’ final drive. In Week Six, the Eagles lost to the Washington Redskins and the Eagles offense struggled.
Wentz completed only 50 percent of his passes on the day, while the Eagles’ two touchdowns came on a kickoff return for a touchdown and a defensive touchdown.
He has even impressed ESPN football analyst Mel Kiper Jr:
His poise has been impressive and he has showed off the tools of a future star. Wentz has the potential to be a Ben Roethlisberger type of quarterback. One that can’t just throw the ball well, but can also avoid the rush and make plays happen on his feet. The two are already similar and in the future that could be the comparison that is made. We won’t really know until a few years down the road but Wentz has the potential to be that quarterback that teams are willing to dish out big bucks for in hopes to win a championship.
Even though they lost last week, Wentz doesn’t face another great team until Week Seven when they play the Vikings (5-0), whose defense has looked almost impenetrable. We will have to wait and see if he ends up being the quarterback Eagles fans have been waiting for.