Frank Reich: I don’t think drafting another player sent Carson Wentz in a tailspin

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After the 2020 season, it was clear quarterback Carson Wentz needed a fresh start.

He got one when Indianapolis agreed to trade for him in February, reuniting him with his former offensive coordinator, Colts head coach Frank Reich.

That Wentz was even available would have likely been a shock a year ago at this time, despite Philadelphia drafting Jalen Hurts in the second round. But selecting the former Alabama and Oklahoma QB was reportedly part of what made Wentz lose confidence.

During an appearance on the Rich Eisen Show this week, Reich disagreed with that characterization.

“I don’t think that’s the case. That’s how I feel about it. That’s my opinion, that I don’t think the drafting of another player sent Carson in a tailspin,” Reich said. “I think it’s complicated. I think it was a lot of different dynamics. When you win or lose in this league, everybody should share in the success and everybody should share in the blame. It usually doesn’t work that way. The quarterback, head coach, whoever, GMs tend to be the focal point. So Carson took his share of being the focal point of the blame, and that’s part of the process of being a quarterback in this league. And you’ve got to be a big boy and you’ve got to be able to take it.

“Now is an opportunity to hit the reset button. It’s an opportunity for the Eagles to [hit] the reset button. And … there’s nothing I want more than to see the Eagles succeed and this be a win-win for both teams — that Jalen Hurts is successful, it’s all good. I love great quarterback play, but I’m glad we got our guy.”

Realistically, Wentz and Hurts are each on one-year auditions to see if they can actually be the franchise quarterbacks for their respective teams. If both play well, that would work out to the win-win Reich would like to see.

37 responses to “Frank Reich: I don’t think drafting another player sent Carson Wentz in a tailspin

  1. I don’t know if you caught it …but Reich actually zinged Wentz here. The “Big boy” part. That was definitley a shot at Wentz.

  2. I think the reason Wentz didn’t do as well is because Reich took the Colts job and nobody in Philly was capable of filling his (O.C.) shoes. It’s put up or shut up time for Wentz and I think he’ll do just fine thank you very much.

  3. Reich is right. It was a culmination of things. Wentz didn’t lose the Redskins, Rams, and Ravens games: that was all on the defense. But Carson got all of the blame. Even though the entire team was lousy and banged up.

  4. Its professional football – a gladiator sport. On average, 1/3 of all QBs are injured each year, some of them not finishing the season. A starting QB would “lose confidence” in the team investing in depth? Hopefully not. If so, maybe pro football is not for you.

  5. It wasn’t the competition that was at issue with Wentz – it was the OL. Wentz struggled big time in the face of pressure as a rookie, and then for three straight years developed exclusively behind elite blocking. Sooner or later, he was going to see pressure, and instead of getting to ease into it with a gradually declining line it came at him like a tidal wave. Remember, Dak Prescott looked cool as a cucumber as a rookie behind an elite line, and yet when his team’s LT situation was a mess in the second half of his rookie year he looked absolutely lost. Guys need time to learn and adjust – to return to the Prescott example, his OL was actually worse in his third year than during the LT issue, but he took lessons from that first struggle and actually looked more comfortable in that worse situation. Perhaps Wentz is the type who will always struggle with pressure; or, perhaps he just needs a chance to learn how to handle it. But it comes down to the blocking, not some poor reaction to a draft pick.

  6. No clue what the issue was, but he was frequently late with his decisions. Receiving corps not super talented but when someone did get open Carson would either throw to the wrong read or take a sack trying to figure it out. Maybe coaching? He certainly has skills. Wish him well, but just well enough that Eagles get a good first round pick!

  7. HC already making apologies for mentally soft QB. This will end predictably.

  8. I hope he does well. I want that #1 pick. Who knows I would love to see the Eagles and Colts in the Super Bowl

  9. gronkhof says:
    May 7, 2021 at 11:16 am
    Its professional football – a gladiator sport. On average, 1/3 of all QBs are injured each year, some of them not finishing the season. A starting QB would “lose confidence” in the team investing in depth? Hopefully not. If so, maybe pro football is not for you.
    ——
    Drafting for “depth” is generally considered 4th through the 7th round.

    Not #53 overall.

  10. To those of you saying that the coaches couldn’t handle Wentz after Reich left, that doesn’t say very much that’s good about Wentz, does it?

    Yes, there was adversity and injuries around Wentz in Philly last year. I wouldn’t wish it on any qB.

    But let’s get it straight. 2020 adversity or not, since the 2017 ACL tear he showed a consistent proclivity for either holding onto the ball too long and then turning it over (or taking a sack), or throwing it right to someone on the other team.

    He folded like a cheap suit under that adversity.

    Reich is right. It’s time to be a “big boy.”

    That means a lot of things. One thing it definitely *doesn’t* mean is convincing yourself that because you’re so “dialed in” you get to kill plays and lose downs when you don’t like the coach’s play calls. He lost the locker room, the coaching staff, AND the front office with that stuff.

    He’s got mad talent and physical gifts. If Reich can get him right between the ears, he can do great things. But from this vantage point, that’s a big “if.”

    I’m an Eagles fan, but I’m pulling for Carson.

  11. Wentz’s complaint isn’t really all that much different than Rodgers complaint. Why draft another QB when he’s getting sacked 30+ times a season (and it wasn’t getting better)? Why waste a pick when they need offensive weapons (their last 1,000 yard rusher and WR were LeSean McCoy and Jeremy Maclin both in 2014 – TE Zach Ertz had 1,000 yards receiving in 2018). They didn’t resign Nelson Agholor, so the Eagles new the cupboard was bare. So instead of improving the team, the created disharmony. The Eagle management is in a tailspin.

  12. if he really got that shook cause they drafted someone at his position then he’s mentally compromised and i do not want him on my team…hell joe montana had steve young breathing down his neck for 5 seasons and young was being paid a mil per season, unheard of back then for a backup…you didn’t see joe crying, he even won it all one of those 5 seasons

  13. Wentz’s complaint isn’t really all that much different than Rodgers complaint. Why draft another QB when he’s getting sacked 30+ times a season (and it wasn’t getting better)? Why waste a pick when they need offensive weapons (their last 1,000 yard rusher and WR were LeSean McCoy and Jeremy Maclin both in 2014 – TE Zach Ertz had 1,000 yards receiving in 2018). They didn’t resign Nelson Agholor, so the Eagles knew the cupboard was bare. So instead of improving the team, the created disharmony. The Eagle management is in a tailspin.

  14. So many of these QBs love & crave all the attention of being the “Face of the Franchise” in this team sport, yet can’t handle being the focus of any/all criticisms that always follow when having that title. Leaders need to be able to handle the bad — even if not their fault, per se — just as good, if not better, than they handle the good. Reich is correct about wentz: “you’ve got to be a big boy and you’ve got to be able to take it.” Time will tell if Wentz can grow up & rise to the challenge.

  15. I’m a Texas fan, but I can also admit Sam Ehlinger has his limitations.

    Still, there is no way by midseason Ehlinger will not be ready to replace Wentz.

    Carson Wentz was absolutely horrible last year. Horrible. It has nothing to do with the roster either. He only had 4 games of 60% completions or better. He averaged 6 yards per attempt. Jalen Hurts’ was 7.2.

  16. Thanks for taking on that contract. I still believe in Wentz but realistically he’ll be a middle 3rd ish QB. Over under he starts 12 of the 17 – which could put Indy in a good place come December. Sadly my Eagles are not going to be anything of note for a couple more years.

  17. Reich said. “I think it’s complicated…”

    —————————————————

    Exactly. People want to oversimplify things. Nothing is ever that simple. And LOL at all the “Wentz isn’t mentally tough” comments. Give me a break. Internet tough guys have absolutely NO IDEA what kind of pressure these guys are under. Confidence isn’t just a thing you have, it can be raised or diminished. A young QB feeling like his team is bailing on him is going to affect his confidence and his play. That’s not all on Wentz by a long shot. That’s the organization failing him.

    Wentz has handled the pressure before, and I think he’ll do fine in Indy. Meanwhile, I’m sure the Eagles will mishandle Hurts and then blame everything on him.

  18. It always comes down to like versus unlike. If you like the person you see the positives ,if you don’t like the person you see the negatives. This is true in every walk of life .

  19. “And you’ve got to be a big boy and you’ve got to be able to take it.”

    Howie Roseman wants a fist bump.

  20. Watching. from afar it seems that Nick Foles outperformed him and Wentz did nothing to earn his spot back. Maybe if they made Wenrz earn his spot back instead of handing it back to him he would be a much better QB. I don’t really follow the Eagles so I might be wrong about that.

  21. maximusintoxicus says:
    May 7, 2021 at 11:05 am

    I think the reason Wentz didn’t do as well is because Reich took the Colts job and nobody in Philly was capable of filling his (O.C.) shoes. It’s put up or shut up time for Wentz and I think he’ll do just fine thank you very much.

    —————————

    Wentz was sensational during the stretch in 2019 and almost single handedly took the team to the NFC East Championship and playoffs.

  22. Wentz lost the locker room in 2019 when Malcolm Jenkins snatched the ‘team leadership’ from him.
    The front office let Jenkins walk and the team reacted negatively.Last season was the result.
    When your teammates don’t have your back … you bailout.

  23. I don’t think so either. Probably getting hit all the time behind that line did. But seriously, he is mentally fragile. That’s obvious.

  24. bobcobb301 says:
    May 7, 2021 at 12:55 pm
    I’m a Texas fan, but I can also admit Sam Ehlinger has his limitations.

    Still, there is no way by midseason Ehlinger will not be ready to replace Wentz.
    _______________
    That’s funny.
    Ehlinger will be on the practice squad with Eason backing up Wentz.

  25. Look at the tape. Wentz was historically bad. Turnovers, sacks taken holding onto the ball too long, inaccurate and his refusal to accept responsibility. A historically poor season where any QB not just given franchise altering one would have been pulled 6 games sooner.

  26. Nothing is ever simple for sure, maybe Wentz is one of those guys that is motivated by a certain kind of coaching and Reich is his guru. Reich was a good backup QB, greatest comeback etc. Seems to be a good coach too. This could make or break his reputation. Time will tell.

  27. Even in another uniform, the pro Wentz crowd is still making excuses for his bad play and non-professional actions.

  28. He clearly regressed last season. What’s not so clear is why he regressed. I sure he deserves some of the blame. What makes me really question all this is why they gave up on him so fast. What did they know ?

  29. I agree 100% with Reich. Jalen Hurts wouldn’t intimidate a guy who was playing MVP ball at a very young age. Reich moving on to Philadelphia had a much bigger impact. In situations like this, it might just be better for everyone to make a change, and they did. Nobody has to be the bad guy. Marriages don’t always work out. It’s not just one side or the other. Tampa Bay decided to get rid of Steve Young, before he went to the 49ers and won a super bowl. New England gave up on Jim Plunkett. Atlanta let Brett Favre go, and San Diego let Drew Brees go. Stuuf happens. Move on. We live in a society where everyone thinks they have to choose a side all the time. Get over it. Life goes on. But Jalen Hurts wasn’t scaring anybody. Believe me. Jalen is a good guy. If anything, he’d be a positive.

  30. Crazy how quickly the eagles got rid of nearly everyone that had a part in their only SB winning team.

  31. charliecharger says:
    May 7, 2021 at 7:16 pm
    I agree 100% with Reich. Jalen Hurts wouldn’t intimidate a guy who was playing MVP ball at a very young age. Reich moving on to Philadelphia had a much bigger impact. In situations like this, it might just be better for everyone to make a change, and they did. Nobody has to be the bad guy. Marriages don’t always work out. It’s not just one side or the other. Tampa Bay decided to get rid of Steve Young, before he went to the 49ers and won a super bowl. New England gave up on Jim Plunkett. Atlanta let Brett Favre go, and San Diego let Drew Brees go. Stuuf happens. Move on. We live in a society where everyone thinks they have to choose a side all the time. Get over it. Life goes on. But Jalen Hurts wasn’t scaring anybody. Believe me. Jalen is a good guy. If anything, he’d be a positive.

    ===============

    Reich is being very generous with that narrative and so are you. Here are the important parts you left out.

    1. 2017. Backup QB Foles finished the regular season and won the Superbowl, not Wentz.
    2. 2018. The next year the team was struggling with Wentz at QB, Wentz goes down again and backup Nick Foles pretty much runs the table to make the playoffs and was a dropped Alshon Jeffery pass that hit him in the chest from going to the NFC Conference game.
    3. 2019. Wentz injured on 2nd series of his first playoff game of his career. Backup McNown plays pretty much the entire game.
    4. 2020. While the entire team stunk, Wentz kept making it worse.

    Wentz was coming off a 3 year stretch where his backups won the superbowl, almost made a second, and replaced him in a 3rd. On top of that he needed coddling before all that.

    But hey, if i tied my future to Wentz, I might try lying my ass off to make the guy who has to be coddled feel better about himself. It doesn’t do Reich any good to point out the inconvenient history.

  32. I agree with Reich. I believe what sent Wentz into a tailspin was those crucial interceptions he threw in the season opener against Washington, turning a 17-0 lead into a loss. He never recovered from that and neither did the team.

  33. JMHO. Frank will keep him pointed in the right direction. As time went on his fluence on Wentz wained because he wasn’t there. But a solid team is waiting in Indy to support what can be high performasnce QB- with the right guide….
    It took 4 years for the Frank to wear off, how long before the Frank in Wentz gets restored- I say 1 season.

    As someone pointed out earlier…
    “eagleswin says:

    1. 2017. Backup QB Foles finished the regular season and won the Superbowl, not Wentz.
    2. 2018. The next year the team was struggling with Wentz at QB, Wentz goes down again and backup Nick Foles pretty much runs the table to make the playoffs and was a dropped Alshon Jeffery pass that hit him in the chest from going to the NFC Conference game.
    3. 2019. Wentz injured on 2nd series of his first playoff game of his career. Backup McNown plays pretty much the entire game.
    4. 2020. While the entire team stunk, Wentz kept making it worse.”

    Great post by eagleswin…

  34. JMHO. Frank will keep him pointed in the right direction. As time went on his fluence on Wentz wained because he wasn’t there. But a solid team is waiting in Indy to support what can be high performasnce QB- with the right guide…. It took 4 years for the Frank to wear off, how long before the Frank in Wentz gets restored- I say 1 season.

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