There’s been no shortage of Carson Wentz trade buzz recently and now ESPN is adding more fuel to the fire. Adam Schefter and Chris Mortensen issued the following report on Saturday afternoon:
The Philadelphia Eagles are expected to trade Carson Wentz in the coming days in what would be the latest blockbuster quarterback deal to rock the NFL, league sources tell ESPN.
The most pertinent questions now become where, when and for what. But it could happen as early as this week, per league sources, even as the Eagles continue to insist to other teams that they would be happy to bring Wentz back to Philadelphia.
Lol at that last sentence. I get that the Eagles need to make it seem like they want Wentz back to have leverage, and perhaps they genuinely do, but it’s clear that the quarterback isn’t thrilled about being in Philly. It feels like an untenable dynamic that inevitably ends in Wentz getting traded, which is the reality we’re living in.
In terms of what the Eagles are looking to get back for Wentz, the report says the Eagles are looking for “a Matthew Stafford package.” As a reminder, Stafford was dealt to the Los Angeles Rams last weekend in exchange for a 2021 third-round pick, a 2022 first-round pick, a 2023 first-round pick, and Jared Goff. The feeling here is the Eagles aren’t going to get nearly as much for Wentz. Why? Well, Stafford was seemingly a hot commodity. And there is serious doubt that Wentz is valued similarly:
Eagles are asking for two 1s for Carson Wentz, which has led to some dial tones, including from one team previously perceived to be a favored landing spot.— Greg A. Bedard (@GregABedard) February 6, 2021
Bedard seems to be referring to the Indianapolis Colts in the preceding tweet, which is relevant with the ESPN report saying that the Colts and Chicago Bears are “amongst the teams that have expressed some level of interest in Wentz.” We wrote earlier today about how the Bears are rumored to be offering something like a 2021 first-round pick (No. 20 overall), a 2022 third-round pick, and maybe Nick Foles in exchange for Wentz. But it’s not perfectly clear if the Eagles will even get that much.
A Wentz trade previously seemed unlikely from the standpoint that the Eagles will be responsible for $33.8 million in dead money, which marks a new NFL record. But it’s possible that Wentz could help further facilitate a deal with some financial tweaking. Assuming no changes, the Eagles would at least clear $852,928 in cap space (per Over The Cap) and they would avoid $10 million of his 2022 salary becoming fully guaranteed on the third day of the 2021 league year. In other words, they’d be ripping off the band-aid now.
There’s been thought that the Eagles should put effort into revitalizing Wentz as opposed to trading him. The problem with that line of thinking is there’s serious concern about Wentz being coachable. And even if he does rebound to pre-2020 form, one must wonder if it’s a prudent idea to be paying out elite quarterback money to a quarterback who hasn’t regularly been elite.
And so the feeling here is that a Wentz trade ultimately makes sense for the Eagles. It’s just very unfortunate it had to come to this and it still leaves Philly’s future look very uncertain. Jalen Hurts showed potential as a rookie but there’s no guarantee he’s a franchise quarterback. The Eagles might look to select a top passing prospect in the 2021 NFL Draft but they might have to actually trade up from No. 6 overall to do so.
In any case, it sure seems like it’s a matter of WHEN and not IF Wentz will be traded.