There were moments during the Eagles' spring practices when it was clear why Philadelphia traded a number of picks to select Carson Wentz with the No. 2 overall in the 2016 NFL Draft. Wentz showed an impressive deep ball along with an uncanny ability to make accurate passes while throwing on the move.
But there were also times when it was clear Wentz is still very much a rookie. The 23-year-old from North Dakota State struggled to throw a tight spiral at times. His wobbly passes caught the eye of head coach Doug Pederson.
"I would agree, there is a little bit of a wobble," Pederson said when asked about the supposed issue. "But again, not a concern."
"A lot of those situations, a lot of those throws from a young quarterback, come from learning your system. Meaning, you're a little late here, you're a little late there, you're trying to anticipate that throw, you're a little off here. And so you're processing all the information so fast, that the last thing that goes is the throw, the actual physical nature of the throw."
There's been some thought that Wentz's wobble can be attributed to the change from college regulation footballs to NFL regulation footballs. The ball dimensions aren't actually that different (if at all), but some quarterbacks have noticed the balls feel different. (Get your laughs out now.) Wentz himself doesn't seem to notice a big change.
"I feel really comfortable with [the NFL ball]," he said. "I think sometimes [my throw] just doesn’t always come out perfect. Especially on quick throws sometimes, you’re just trying to get the ball out. I’ll continue to get used to it, but I feel pretty good with it as well."
Wentz further explained that the wobble isn't something entirely new to him.
"I’ve had a little bit of that over my collegiate career, I guess, but I don’t know," he admitted. "Sometimes it just doesn’t come out clean, but that’s something that with just more reps that I get and getting comfortable, just continuing to work on my mechanics and everything, that [wobble] will go away."
In the long-term picture, Wentz's wobble probably isn't a big deal. In the short-term, though, it's a reminder that he's probably not ready to start right away. That's not to say he couldn't start; it's just that there's no need to rush him.
"Timing and accuracy is really what matters at the end of the day," Wentz said. "As a quarterback, yeah, [a tight spiral] looks pretty sometimes, but no, that’s not always the end all be all.
"I think [the tight spiral] will just come with reps. More reps, continuing to refine my mechanics and everything. I think it’ll be just fine."