Eagles 43, Rams 35. The December showdown, and the duel between Carson Wentz and Jared Goff, that nobody saw coming before the season, Philadelphia at Los Angeles lived up to all the hype.
78 combined points, huge plays by both teams, controversial penalties…, it had it all and the Eagles bounced back in a huge way after the loss in Seattle.
But… something tells me they don’t feel like celebrating at all. Philadelphia won the game, won the division, but might very well have lost their season in the process. Because as good as that win was, and it was great, losing Carson Wentz to a knee injury MIGHT JUST ruin everything.
Late in the third quarter, Wentz went lunging into the end zone and was hit by Mark Barron. Roll it:
He took a shot to the knee on that play and then stayed in the game for four more plays, including a touchdown to Alshon Jeffrey on 4th and goal that gave Philly the lead.
A great catch and… the end of the good times for Philly, because Wentz walked off the field, to the trainer’s table, and then headed for the locker room.
The fact that Wentz walked straight to the locker room told you it was bad, and official word this AM is that Wentz did in fact tear his ACL in his left knee.
And if you’re a Super Bowl contender, here’s something you never want to be doing: turning your team over to a backup.
Yes, I know that backup quarterbacks have won Super Bowls before. And that Nick Foles had a monster year in 2013 where he threw for 27 touchdowns with a quarterback rating of 119. And maybe he finds something close to that again. And maybe the Eagles still win the Super Bowl. But if you’re trying to convince yourself that Philly’s chances didn’t take a huge hit yesterday, you’re fooling yourself and nobody else. Prior to his knee exploding, allegedly probably, the NFC looked like the Eagles and everyone else. Now that is conference is WIDE ASS OPEN.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying their season is over. I’m not saying that they should just give up now, grab the golf clubs and come back in 2018. That’s not it at all. They have the best record in the conference and a really good look at a bye and homefield throughout. And they definitely benefit from the fact that there aren’t a lot of other elite teams in the NFC this year. Just like they still have a strong ground game and a great defense, one that can step up when their offense needs help, just like it did last night when Chris Long got to Jared Goff on a strip sack.
But this is Nick Foles’ team now. Foles is a good backup. He might even be a very good backup, but he’s a backup. He’s not Carson Wentz. He’s not the MVP favorite. Wentz is a special player. Wentz is the biggest reason the Eagles are where they are right now.
And as good, and well-rounded, as the Eagles are, you don’t lose the MVP favorite and just keep on rolling. And if they do, they are so much better than I thought. But I doubt it. You don’t just NEXT MAN UP, CARSON WENTZ.