Last week ended the long saga of the Carson Wentz trade, as the Eagles finally agreed to send him to what might have been the only suitor: Indianapolis. Jenny and Gary discuss whether the Wentz-Frank Reich marriage will work in Indy, and more than that, why the Colts finally had to act urgently to land the quarterback.
Right now, the quarterback market is shrinking for teams that don’t have a top 10 pick, as the Colts got their guy, but the Patriots, Washington Football Team, and Bears, among others, they are still looking for answers that might not be there. . How a weak veterans market and a projected weak pool of quarterbacks for 2022 are putting some teams in a bind. And why it makes it even more obvious that Texans will have to give in to Deshaun Watson’s commercial demand sooner rather than later.
Also, Michael Fabiano goes through the weekly segment of SI Fantasy.
The following transcript is an excerpt from The MMQB NFL podcast. Listen to the full episode on podcast players everywhere or in SI.com.
Gary Gramling: Let’s talk about Wentz at this point. So I guess if you look at this as an optimist, if you are the Indianapolis Colts, we are achieving the reunification of Carson Wentz with Frank Reich. And now you get a kind of 2017 form from Carson Wentz where he was obviously firmly in the MVP discussion before he had his ACL torn? And I guess you have a really good offensive line at the very least in Indianapolis. You have some pretty good guns, and they’re all different from Philadelphia – they’re all healthy. So I guess it’s okay to be optimistic or this feels like a desperate move. I mean, look, when you take a step back, the Colts were in a position where they probably weren’t going to … I mean, yeah, they could have spent a fortune and put up 15 picks and engaged in the conversation during some of the matches. these rookie quarterbacks. But what are you going to get there? They really had no options for a promotion to quarterback outside of Wentz. And then the question is, is Wentz an update?
Jenny Vrentas: Good, and these quarterback rehab projects have mixed results. But what gives you optimism is that Frank Reich knows exactly what he’s getting. So it’s not another team stabbing a player who failed elsewhere and thinking that team didn’t know what they were doing, etc. Well, Frank Reich might think that … but he knows he’s a player that he has direct intimate experience with, already has a relationship with him. I think what we’re going to see this season will answer some of the questions about what the hell happened in Philadelphia because we don’t have a full story yet. Why did things go so far south? There were reports over the weekend that Pederson and Wentz weren’t communicating last season, and it was clear that Wentz wanted a fresh start. But then Pederson was fired, and Wentz still wants a fresh start. So how do you go from being an MVP candidate in the 2017 season to being traded with the Eagles and receiving little in return? So I think when we see what happens to Wentz at Indy this season, it will give us a clearer idea of whether there was mismanagement of him as a quarterback in Philadelphia. Was the trust between him and his teammates broken? Hadn’t a sufficient list been built around it? Was the insufficiency of that list a reason for its failure? I think this maybe answers some of the questions we all have, because when you see a quarterback have that steep drop, it’s always so confusing and you have a lot of variables to analyze. But seeing how he performs under Reich in Indy will give us a lot of clarity, I think.
Gary Gramling: I know it’s especially confusing because it’s not like this is a 36-year-old who was good 10 years ago. He is 28 years old; it was really good four years ago. For the most part, it was the same system they used there. And I look back at the 2019 season when they had all these wide receiver injuries and he was easily the slowest receiving body in the NFL at the end of the season, he was probably the worst – he was in the conversation of being the worst. And yet he made it work. He played well in 2019. It’s almost like for me, the mystery is less about his MVP caliber season from 2017 to 2020 and what happened, is it almost like what happened between 2019 and 2020? Why did this get exponentially worse as the season progressed? And it was really confusing to watch. And I mean, look, it was probably a confluence of things. It was the problem of the offensive line, which was much more injured than it had been in recent years, it was the players in bad position, the bad plays, etc. But it all added up to a guy who just didn’t trust what he was seeing, and after a while, they couldn’t trust him because a lot of his turnovers last year were just a matter of extending plays and doing ridiculous things.
Jenny Vrentas: Yes, when they went to the Super Bowl, the offensive line was one of the team’s strengths. And over the years, the boys get older, the injuries pile up. It got to the point where last year it was one of the weaknesses. So certainly that was a factor. But you also wonder psychologically, the moment Nick Foles takes over as backup and wins the Super Bowl and Wentz is pushed aside for the end of that season, that made it inevitable that he needed a fresh start. sometime? I think watching how it played out, we had a curiosity, like how will this affect Wentz? Because I think most of us would think, not certainly as an NFL quarterback, but what that feeling would be like. You’re in a position and something takes you out of this position and then the guy behind you comes in and wins a championship or gets a big hit. I mean, I think a lot of people can think Oh my gosh that would be a horrible feeling. And there were certainly a lot of reports about Wentz losing the locker room in the following years and that he was not the type they believed in. And did that further break your confidence? Didn’t that allow you to resume that role? So a lot happened in the years that followed, but certainly one of the strangest dips or declines … I don’t mean decline because again he’s very young and it was a short period of time. time.
Gary Gramling: I mean, God, when you step back, Wentz’s entire run in Philadelphia was just … the twists and turns were incredible. I mean, he comes from the state of North Dakota, ends up getting the starting job in Week 1, which surprises everyone; pass from Sam Bradford. And then it goes on to MVP season. I mean, the old saying is that the most popular guy in any city is the backup quarterback. And the backup quarterback steps in and wins the Super Bowl. And then he has to come back from that, and then he’s benched a second time. And all at the age of 28. And it was such a wild ride when all was said and done. And maybe, if nothing else, you find a certain level of stability in Indianapolis, where I mean, look, Jacob Eason probably isn’t pushing him for the starting job anytime soon. Honestly, I was wondering if they would bring Jacoby Brissett back, because Jacoby Brissett (along with that, I personally like Jacoby a lot and I think it should start somewhere), but Jacoby Brissett has a reputation for being the mayor of that locker room, like the most popular boy in that wardrobe. And it’s kind of like, do you want to tempt fate again? Especially if you are taking into account … Conor Orr had written about this, that there is an escalator in that 2022 selection. If he plays 75% of the snaps or if he plays 70% and they reach the playoffs, but if they are at 6-8 or something like that, does that change your calculation now?
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Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.