Zach Wentz grew up in Bismarck as the older, more athletic brother of his younger sibling, Carson. The two played baseball together, tossed a football back and forth — taking turns as designated quarterback and receiver — and never wanted to lose to the other.
"When [Carson] was younger, he wore his emotions on his sleeve, no doubt," Zach said, grinning. "When we were younger siblings and we competed, we wanted to beat each other. If I got beat, I wore my emotions there, too."
For a long time, Zach held the advantage. During his freshman year of high school, he stood 6-foot-1. When Carson was a freshman a few years later, he was just 5-foot-8.
His height didn’t deter the fiery younger brother, though. Just ask Zach.
"He’s been a natural athlete since he was a young kid," the elder Wentz said Friday. "It just took him a while to grow into his frame a little bit, and then it took off."
When the Eagles picked Carson with the second overall pick on Thursday, they brought both halves of the ultra-competitive Wentz brotherhood to the City of Brotherly Love.
Zach, who until recently taught in his hometown of Bismarck, and his wife are planning on moving to Philadelphia to help Carson with the transition from a town of about 61,000 to the fifth-largest city in the country, while also trying to learn an entirely new offense and figure out how to nudge himself past incumbent gunslinger Sam Bradford. (Okay, maybe the last part isn’t on his to-do list. Yet.)
The idea actually came from Wentz’s agent and his financial advisor, who thought it might be a good idea if the 23-year-old quarterback had someone to help him. Who better than his brother?
Carson agreed, so he floated the idea to Zach, reminding him there was absolutely no pressure to say yes.
To Zach, though, it was a no-brainer.
"We grew up in Bismarck, we've been there, I like my job, I like what I do there, but anybody in their right mind would do this," Zach said.
"My wife and I decided in the last two weeks that we’re going to move with him," he said. "Carson — if he wants us out here, and we can offer any support system possible, that’s what we’re going to be here for. We know this whole thing is a transition for everybody, and we’re going to be here to support him."