All aboard the Wentz Wagon. It’s just two games, but Carson Wentz is the real deal. Yeah, I said it. I can’t remember the last time I’ve been as impressed with a rookie quarterback. In part, because there’s nothing rookie about him.
That didn’t look like a guy whose biggest road game ever was against Montana, in front of 25,000 fans. Last night was on the road, in Chicago, Monday Night Football, in front of 60,000, and millions watching at home. And he didn’t look rattled at all. The moment definitely wasn’t too big for him.
And the Eagles knew it. Normally, in a rookie’s first road start, in a primetime game, you come out and establish the run. Go play action. Break him in slowly. Don’t put too much on him. Not last night. Doug Pederson’s guys came out with empty sets and Wentz was slinging it on every down. 6 straight passes to open the game and 10 pass plays on the opening drive. That’s confidence in your rookie qb making his first start. And he lived up to it.
Pederson said afterwards: “Was it perfect? It was by no means perfect. At the same time, he’s seeing it very well and he’s commanding the huddle. It’s something a nine-, 10-year veteran would do. It’s showing his maturity and the ability that he has to play quarterback.”
Maturity? Check. Ability? Check. Toughness? Check. Maybe a little too much. My man, you don’t need to lower the shoulder on every linebacker. You don’t need to take on every single tackler. The life you save could be your own.
And yes, I know it’s the Browns and the Bears, not the Broncos and the Seahawks, and he’ll get a tougher test this weekend against the Steelers. And now that the Eagles are 2-0, Philly is going to be going crazy, because that’s what Philly does. The stakes will get higher and so will the expectations.
But this is a guy whose last true road game was at Youngstown State, but he seemed just as comfortable at Soldier Field as he did back home at the Fargodome. I don’t know if he’s the next Tom Brady or Aaron Rodgers, but I know he’s not the next JaMarcus Russell or Tim Couch.
21 for 34, 190 yards, 1 touchdown, zero turnovers. For the second straight game. Those aren’t video game numbers, but they would’ve been better if his receivers didn’t have some costly drops.
Dude just looks like he belongs. And that he is special. He was comfortable in the pocket, showed good touch, and could extend plays with his feet. Again, Maybe a little too far, actually. Feel free to mix in a slide or step out of bounds. You’ll be better for it. And so will I. Because I can’t have the Wentz Wagon losing an axle because you went truck stick too many times.