Eagles put out the word that they intend to keep Carson Wentz, for obvious reasons

Philadelphia Eagles v Green Bay Packers
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As the Eagles kick Carson Wentz to the curb for Sunday’s game against the Saints, they’re already commencing the process of posturing for a looming offseason mess with Wentz.

Step one in advance of potentially trading him in March: Create the impression that they won’t be trading him in March.

None of this changes the belief that people have in Carson,” a team source “insisted” to Adam Schefter of ESPN.com.

In order to have any leverage in trade talks, the Eagles have to say they’re keeping Wentz. In order to have any sort of a positive relationship with Wentz if they can’t trade him, they also have to say they’re keeping Wentz.

The Eagles already are on the hook for $25 million in 2021 salary for Wentz. Another $15 million in 2022 salary becomes fully guaranteed on the third day of the 2021 league year. Thus, they need to figure out fairly quickly Wentz’s future, and if they’re going to entertain a trade they need to find a way to get suitors to the table.

The cap number associated with keeping Wentz exceeds $34 million. The cap number associated with trading Wentz approaches $34 million. But a trade in the three-day window when the league year begins avoids the $40 million in new cash obligations to Wentz.

This information is readily available, and it’s undoubtedly well known to any team that may be evaluating Wentz. If the Eagles create the impression that they’re motivated to sell, that can be used by an interested team to get the Eagles to take less for Wentz, and/or to get them to pay part of his 2021 or 2022 salary.

That’s what the Dolphins had to do to unload quarterback Ryan Tannehill‘s contract in 2019, paying $5 million in order to get a 2019 seventh-round pick and a 2020 fourth-round pick from the Titans for Tannehill and a 2019 sixth-round pick. The worst-case scenario, of course, would be a Brock Osweiler-style hot potato trade, pursuant to which the Eagles would have to send significant compensation simply to unload Wentz’s guaranteed pay.

In Osweiler’s case, the Browns essentially paid $16 million (ultimately, a little more than $15 million) for a second-round pick from the Texans. Cleveland had no desire to use Osweiler when trading for him; any team that would trade for Wentz presumably would try to salvage his career.

The Colts continue to be the team that makes the most sense for Wentz. Former Eagles offensive coordinator Frank Reich serves as the head coach, and the Colts will see both Philip Rivers and Jacoby Brissett become free agents in 2021. Indeed, if Reich doesn’t want Wentz despite having a history with him, that should be a bright red flag for any other team.

Whether it’s the Colts or anyone else, the Eagles need leverage in order to get the most they can for the asset they’d likely love to unload. So they’re telling Schefter what they need to say, hopeful that he’ll spread the word.

And so he’s spreading the word, just like he did in early 2019, when he reported that the Eagles were expected to use the franchise tag on quarterback Nick Foles and then try to trade him, citing unnamed “sources on other teams who have been in touch with Philadelphia” — a deft move that created the impression that other teams were considering trading for Foles, despite having the $24.685 million 2019 quarterback franchise tag as the starting point for a multi-year deal.

It didn’t work. The Eagles ultimately didn’t tag Foles because they knew they couldn’t trade him, because no one was going to give the Eagles trade compensation and pay Foles that kind of money.

In this case, it remains to be seen whether the Eagles’ insistence that they’re keeping Wentz will get someone to make some/any offer that the Eagles wouldn’t refuse. Although they may be able to find a way to move on from Wentz without giving up a second-round pick and/or paying millions in his 2021 or 2022 compensation, the Eagles will have a very hard time getting anything to close to what they could have gotten for Wentz if they had decided after the 2018 season to keep Foles and to trade Wentz.

Sure, Foles hasn’t been great in the two seasons since he left the Eagles. In hindsight, however, the Eagles would have had a far easier time cleaning up the mess associated with keeping Foles than they’ll have cleaning up the mess associated with keeping Wentz.

18 responses to “Eagles put out the word that they intend to keep Carson Wentz, for obvious reasons

  1. No one is trading for that contract. I still don’t understand why the Iggles did it considering both playoff runs were with Foles. What’s done is done though. Might as well put a competent offensive line around him and see if he improves in 2 years.

  2. I swear if the Eagles trade Wentz and he thrives on his other team then I am fed up beyond repair! The Eagles always do stupid things like that! Especially if they do an Osweiler type trade. Hall of Fame QB Sonny Jurgenson began his career in Philadelphia but the Eagles cut bait and he went to Washington and became a Hall of Fame QB. I hope the Eagles don’t do that in this situation.

  3. He’s not going anywhere unless Hurts comes in a new plays like Mahomes not likely.

    Too much money owed next year. If he stinks next year then he’s gone. Also will depend on new GM.

  4. The compensation for one position, no matter how important, is killing NFL teams. It leaves little to no money to upgrade other positions. Either the league does away with the cap or you will see even poorer play from QB’s in the future. Wentz is one more example of teams leaving themselves open for failure by overpaying one player.

  5. Foles gold. Bears market. Dump Doug. Bills OC or Titans OC interview. Draft OL and CB. Djax, Alshon, Peters gone. Wentz will be on shorter leash.

  6. GMs never learn. Don’t sign a guy to big money unless you absolutely know he’s worth it. Mahomes and Wilson, yes. Wentz and Elliot, heck no.

  7. NEVER should have given him the extension. Too early and WAAAAAYYYYYYYYYY to much money but hindsight is 20/20.

  8. If I’m GM of a team with a good offensive line and no decent QB, I’d definitely take a run at Wentz if the trade compensation is minimal (a third round pick or less) and the Eagles pick up a portion of his salary. When healthy, Wentz has shown himself to be an above average QB in the past. This year, he just hasn’t got any help on offense–too many injuries and poor player acquisition have killed the Eagles. He’ll bounce back with a decent Oline and at least one good, healthy receiver.

  9. Watching a promo for Justin Jefferson for potential offensive rookie of the year and thinking to myself, Roseman thought this guy was not good enough to play for the Eagles.

    Actually, the last 2 WRs Roseman elected to pass on in favor of inferior wide receivers are in the top 20 in the entire league. The 2 the Eagles picked, JJAW will be flipping burgers this time next year and they still don’t know what they have in Raegor.

    The Eagles miss on more players in the draft than anyone in the league.

  10. Wentz needs to be reunited with Frank Reich,his personal QB whisperer in order to fix his game. He has shown that he has the tools. He needs to be around the right people.

  11. I don’t get why you guys keep pushing that they are done with Wentz. If they give up on him after 1 bad season it will give all the wrong impressions. He has been a rock for the team and he is someone everyone respects. The entire team has come to his defense, if they don’t fix the problem (online, drafting, wr, play calling, coaching) they aren’t going to be doing themselves any favors by curbing Wentz.

  12. Why trade or dump him? Keep him as the backup. He’ll probably be a good backup. They’ve already decided to give him all that money.

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