When the only alternative is Nate Sudfeld, it’s not a tough decision.
Coach Doug Pederson explained during a Tuesday press conference that Foles will indeed start, when the Eagles host the Saints, Panthers, or Falcons on January 13.
But despite an initial effort to run the offense with Foles in the same way the offense was run with Wentz, Pederson explained that the team will study things from Foles’ past performances in order to find plays and concepts that he’ll be able to run effectively.
“I’ve gone back and watched a lot of his tape here, [from] St. Louis and when he was here before when I was here,” Pederson told reporters. “I just wanted to go back and just see the types of plays. [T]he quick throw was there, a little play-action pass, the shotgun stuff. . . . Those are all things that are in our system. We might just have to dust a few more off and get that ready to go. But that’s kind of what this week is for: To get some of those ideas and thoughts down on paper and execute them this week in practice.”
Of course, that’s also a clue for whoever the Eagles will be playing regarding their plans for the playoff game. They now know to study the things Foles has done well in the past, and to prepare to see those plays and concepts.
If the new concepts don’t work, in whole or in part because defenses are prepared for them, Pederson didn’t rule out switching to Sudfeld.
“Listen, it’s a one-game season,” Pederson said. “It’s hard to be in desperation mode, but if you are in that mode, who knows? I do know this: It’s not about one guy. It’s about 11 on offense, defense, and special teams. A lot of contributing factors go into winning a game.”
Only one factor can go into losing a game. Poor quarterback play is one of those factors. That’s precisely what the Eagles have had for most of their time without Carson Wentz.