Grading the Philadelphia Eagles Quarterbacks
The NFL season is almost halfway over. Depending on your opinion of it, it's been a very strange season. In Philadelphia, it has been better than a usual rebuilding year. There is no mistake that the Eagles aren't going to be the magical team that the hype made them seem. It's a program that traded away its veteran quarterback days before the start of the season. This created a dilemma: either start rookie Carson Wentz or veteran Chase Daniel. Wentz got the nod and Daniel was relegated to the bench. It's been an up and down performance for them as one has seen barely any snaps. Approaching Week 8, here at ProFootball Spot we're taking a deeper look at the Eagles' quarterbacks and how they can be graded on the first eight weeks of the season.
The grading criteria is as follows from an A-F. If a player hasn't played enough or is out for the season, the review will be up to their last performance.
Rookie Carson Wentz is the man of the hour for the Eagles. A 3-0 start to his season was hotly debated. Some saw it as a complete understanding of new head coach Doug Pederson's system. Others saw it as a fluke, just a bit of rookie luck. There's no doubt that Wentz more than capable of handling a new offense. He went into the game in Week 1 against the Cleveland Browns with one one week down with his squad. Intimidating would be an understatement for most rookies but Wentz executed flawlessly in his first NFL game. He also got his first taste of competition against a Super Bowl team when the Eagles decimated the Pittsburgh Steelers. Vision on the field and his passer rating showed that maybe the Eagles were onto something. The first three weeks of his NFL saw a passer rating of 103.8. For a rookie, that number is a nice way to make your mark in the first three games. Wentz also hadn't thrown an interception in his first three games, a feat that boosted his profile.
Then came the Detroit Lions. With a team that ranked 25th in total defense in the NFL and 30th overall in third-down conversions, it would seem that Wentz would go 4-0. Fate had other plans. Wentz completed 25 of 33 attempts for 238 yards. His first NFL interception came in that game but also had two touchdowns. There were issue with him connecting with receivers down the field and he didn't seem to understand how to exploit the Lions' weakness. The following week against the Washington Redskins was not any better. He barely completed 11 of 22 for 179 yards. It was a poor performance against one of their divisional rivals and it might begin to show a weakness of Wentz's: he's human. With a rookie in the pocket, there is bound to be mistakes. Making yourself vulnerable in the pocket is one that Wentz can easily fix. He also likes to put himself in the position to take rough hits, which isn't always the best situation. Vision on the field can sometimes be lacking but all of these things are learned with time.
Wentz redeemed himself against the then undefeated Minnesota Vikings. That also meant facing their old quarterback Sam Bradford on the field. Wentz proved that he was the man for the Eagles and Bradford was old news. The 21-10 win saw Wentz throw for 138 yards, completed 16 of 28 attempts. He also had another interception and two touchdowns.Yet the Vikings game was not the best one for Wentz. His 52.4 passer rating was the worst in his short six game career. Wentz and the team travels to Dallas this week to take on another divisional rival in the Cowboys. Cowboys Dak Prescott has looked like the future of the team and it'll be a difficult test for Wentz. His weakness can't let him down and he needs to keep working on his form. Fundamentals and mechanics need to be worked on. If he can master the basics, then Wentz will have an easier time playing down the stretch.
There isn't anything really of mention. He took some snaps during training camp and OTAs but has yet to see any playing time. If he does, it'll only be because Wentz is playing abysmally or it hurt.