There’s a trend that quite a few Philadelphia Eagles fans are noticing.
As another week passes, the Philadelphia Eagles prepare for another opponent. This one’s familiar. It’s one of the three teams that ‘Birds’ fans hate the most. Since Monday, Philly has also opened 21-day practice windows for several players that, honestly, are easy to forget about once kickoff approaches.
That isn’t to discredit T.J. Edwards, Rudy Ford, Jason Peters, Dallas Goedert, or Jalen Reagor. All represent value, but their absences have forced us to get to know guys that we aren’t as familiar with. Coincidentally, just like we saw in 2019, Philly fielding a team full of throwaways has led to some of the best football that we’ve seen out of this team all season.
So here we are. Week 8 is upon us, and the Philadelphia Eagles are the favorites for the first time in a long time as they face the hated Dallas Cowboys in a primetime matchup.
What’s strange is this. At times, whether that be this season or last season, it has seemed as though ’11’ plays his best football when the guys around him are less experienced. That’s led to a couple of questions recently, whether you’ve heard them or not. One is this. There’s a theory that Carson Wentz might be intimidated when he’s on the field with stars of equal or greater talent level. Cue the controversy, and let’s dig into this one for a few ticks.
Here’s a walk down the Philadelphia Eagles’ corner of memory lane.
If you’re a ‘Birds’ fan, there’s a chance that any narratives involving Nick Foles might wear on your nerves slightly, but it’s hard to tell some of the Carson Wentz story without bringing up ‘9’. Why? It’s simple. ’11’ gave the Philadelphia Eagles a shot to compete for the Super Bowl, but it was ‘9’ that got the Eagles there and won it.
We’ve heard stories that the team liked Foles better and played harder for him. We’ve seen and read anonymous quotes about the dissatisfaction with Wentz as a quarterback, leader, and teammate. Wentz has been visually stressed whenever DeSean Jackson, Alshon Jeffery, Nelson Agholor, Zach Ertz have been on the field with him (especially if they begin to get frustrated or show any bad body language), but when he’s surrounded by guys who are a few bad quarters from being back on the practice squad or off of this team entirely, he calms down.
Sure, there’s another side to this. After Foles left, his teammates built a shrine to him in the locker room. Often, when ’11’ walks around Lincoln Finacial Field, he passes a statue of Nick Foles and Doug Pederson calling the ‘Philly Special’, so fans and the media get it.
This was never going to be Wentz’s team as long as Foles was here. It may never have been his team as long as a voice as strong as Malcolm Jenkins’ was being heard throughout the NovaCare Complex. Keep in mind, once upon a time, Troy Vincent had more pull in the Eagles locker room than Andy Reid, but is the best course of action always to ship these guys off? Does Carson Wentz need to be the only vocal leader on this team?
When you listen to a guy say he can’t listen to the radio or read the paper because the fans can be rough, you can’t blame anyone that asks questions about how tough Carson Wentz is mentally. Come on. He didn’t even know that Doc Rivers was hired to coach the Philadelphia 76ers. That’s a tad extreme.
Again, there’s another side. Think about it. Carson Wentz isn’t from Philly. He’s from South Dakota, Carson Wentz has always been told how great he is, so you can understand if he’s bothered by people saying ‘he sucks’, even if he doesn’t.
Sure, he’s clutch and he’s a monster when he’s surrounded by the guys who won’t (or can’t) ruffle any feathers, but eventually, this team will need to invest in better players. The problem is better players tend to come with opinions, and it’s a huge concern if Philly will always have to go the route of getting rid of strong-willed guys because ’11’ is feeling a little pressure about getting them the ball. This may be something we’ll need to continue to monitor.