ESPN recently simulated a do-over of the 2016 NFL Draft now that we have the benefit of hindsight. So did the Philadelphia Eagles’ pick at No. 2 overall change? Spoiler alert: no, it did not. Via In$ider:
2. Philadelphia Eagles (from Browns)
Re-draft pick: Carson Wentz, QB, North Dakota State
Actual pick: Carson Wentz, QB, North Dakota State
The Eagles will be glad to know the Rams once again passed on Wentz, allowing their guy to fall to them. Wentz did not have Prescott's numbers in Year 1, but he also did not have close to the same quality of talent around him. The coaching staff and front office remain very confident they have hit on a franchise quarterback. -- Tim McManus
As you can see, Wentz was not the first quarterback to be selected in the re-draft. Dallas Cowboys signal caller Dak Prescott went No. 1 overall to the Los Angeles Rams.
It feels like Wentz versus Prescott debates are bound to go on forever, especially since the two quarterback plays on rival teams.
Make no mistake: Prescott clearly had the better rookie season. Prescott completed 67.8% of his attempts for 3,667 yards, 23 touchdowns, four interceptions, and a 104.9 passer rating. Wentz, meanwhile, only completed 62.4% of his passes for 3,782 yards, 16 touchdowns, 14 interceptions, and a 79.3 passer rating.
But now’s the part where I point out that Prescott’s supporting cast was WAY better than anything Wentz had to work with. Prescott had the benefit of playing behind "The Best Offensive Line In NFL History" along with elite weapons like Dez Bryant and Ezekiel Elliott.
Elliott was especially vital to Prescott’s success, which makes it ridiculous that Prescott, and not Elliott, was named NFL Rookie of the Year. The Cowboys ranked first in rushing attempts last season. Dallas was one of only two teams that ran the ball more than they threw. As a result, Prescott attempted the third fewest amount of throws last season. Having an effective running game took so much pressure off of him. This is also how Nick Foles went 27-2 in 2013. I’m not saying Prescott is the next Foles, but the former Pro Bowl MVP certainly serves as a cautionary tale of one-year wonders at the quarterback position.
Wentz didn’t have the same benefit as Prescott at all. The Eagles attempted the sixth most passes of any quarterback. At one point last season, Wentz threw more passes in a seven game stretch than Donovan McNabb threw at ANY point in his career. And not only was Wentz throwing more, but he was throwing to the NFL’s worst wide receiving corps by a mile. It was dreadful to watch.
That’s why this Eagles offseason has to be about getting Wentz help. He needs a legitimate running game to take pressure off him. He needs receivers who can actually catch a football for once. Give Wentz a full offseason to develop and some weapons to work with, and then we can start talking about which quarterback is truly better.
There’s a good chance both Wentz and Prescott will be quality starters for a long time in this league. I’d still take Wentz if I was making the choice because I really think the kid has "it." There are some real "wow" moments when you watch him play. I know that all sounds cliche but if I’m picking a hill to die on, I’ll die on Carson’s.
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