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NFL insider says “there’s no hard and fast plan” for Carson Wentz’s return

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When will No. 11 be back on the field?

NFL: Atlanta Falcons at Philadelphia Eagles James Lang-USA TODAY Sports

NFL insider Mike Garafolo offered an “update” on the status of Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz on Tuesday’s edition of Good Morning Football. Here’s what he had to say.

KAY ADAMS: Should Philly fans expect him back anytime soon?

MIKE GARAFOLO: Well, define “anytime soon.” Before the end of the season? Sure, I would say. Nick Foles played OK. There’s still some things they’re getting going down there. I spent the entire down there [in Philadelphia], I covered the game down there, I still get the sense that it could be a couple of more weeks for Carson Wentz. And then you look — he’s doing great, by the way, it’s not a question of his recovery. It’s just a question of ‘Are we really going to rush this when we can win games with Nick Foles’ Foles is playing well.

I will say, from everything I have been told, it starts from the top down. That Jeffrey Lurie understands if we affect this year to save the next 10 years, and again, it’s not a great effect when you’ve got Nick Foles there, he’s OK with that. And when you get that from the top down, then you can really have patience all the way through your organization.

Here’s the only thing I know for a fact: there’s no hard and fast plan right now as, ‘OK, we’re aiming for Week 3 or Week 5 or Week [unintelligible].’

And once you start to get a little bit further into the schedule, it gets a little tricky because they have a Thursday game, so do you really want to bring him in on a short week? They have a trip to London […] and then they have the bye after that. If he doesn’t play until Week 6, it wouldn’t surprise me. Or, I think that’s a short week. Week 5. If he doesn’t play until after the bye that wouldn’t surprise. He’s doing great. They’re having patience. And once again, it starts from the top down.

I can’t help but feel like the Wentz return reports are all over the place lately. Let’s recap.

On September 2, former NFL doctor David J. Chao said Wentz was still “multiple weeks away” and “more likely to start Week 7 (after a Thursday night game in Week 6) or Week 10 (after a bye in Week 9) than he is to start Week 2.”

On September 6, in the hours leading up to the Eagles’ Week 1 game, NFL insider Ian Rapoport said Wentz is still “several weeks” away and he might not play “until maybe even October.”

Those two sentiments seem to match up. But then a new report emerged over the weekend.

On September 9, NFL insider Chris Mortensen said Wentz “hasn’t been ruled out for Week 2” and the Eagles internally feel like they “wouldn’t be surprised if he’s ready for Week 3.” NFL insider Jay Glazer followed up by saying don’t expect Wentz to play in Week 2.

Mort’s report lines up with a previous sentiment expressed by Peter King that Wentz could be ready for Week 3. It’s the most positive outlook from everything that’s been reported.

So, what’s the make of all this? Given that information seems to be all over the place, Garafolo’s “there’s no hard and fast plan right now” line seems accurate.

It’s clear that the Eagles don’t want to rush Wentz. Really, no one does. No one is out there saying “Wentz needs to be rushed back so the Eagles can win more games now even if it means jeopardizing his future.”

But the notion of “the longer you wait, there is less chance of a re-rupture” is a little silly in that, if you take it to the extreme, Wentz should just not play this year at all. Or ever again. There has to be a point where the risk is reasonably minimized and Wentz can be cleared to play again. As for when that’ll be, it seems like it’s anyone’s guess.

In the meantime, the Eagles will continue to move forward with Foles. Eagles offensive coordinator Mike Groh said Philadelphia has decided on their starting quarterback for Sunday but he wouldn’t reveal who it was. He left that up to head coach Doug Pederson to address during his Wednesday presser. It’s very likely to be Foles once again.