By Mark Gallagher
ESPN’s Adam Schefter is the best-wired NFL writer in the country.
And he is never wrong.
So when he reports, as he has this morning, that the Eagles “still have every intention to keep Carson Wentz and have him be a major part of their team,” we believe him and so should you.
They still believe Wentz can return as the type of standout quarterback he once was, according to team sources.
“None of this changes the belief that people have in Carson,” one team source insisted to ESPN this weekend.
The Eagles must make a decision by the second day of the 2021 league year — sometime in mid-March — because on the third day of the league year, Wentz’s $22 million base salary for 2022 becomes fully guaranteed and his 2021 roster bonus of $10 million also is paid out.
The Eagles could cut Wentz and designate him as a post-June 1 release. In this case, they still would owe him his 2021 salary of $25.4 million — $15.4 million base salary and a $10 million roster bonus. Wentz’s total cap hit would be $59.21 million, but if he is designated as a post-June 1 release, the Eagles would be allowed to spread the cap charge over two years.
Philadelphia also could trade Wentz — and if the Eagles complete a trade before the third day of the 2021 league year, they would not owe him his $10 million roster bonus and the team that acquires him would take on his $25.4 million salary.
The Eagles then would be on the hook for $33.82 million worth of salary-cap charges — $9.27 of signing bonus pro-ration and another $24.55 of guaranteed money from 2022-2024. They could not use a post-June 1 designation on a trade to spread out any cap charges. One NFL executive told ESPN this past week that the best of these scenarios might be to trade Wentz and eat the accelerated guarantees.
Even though the Eagles have benched Wentz, the organization is still standing behind him, as was evident this past week when veteran team leaders Fletcher Cox and Jason Kelce voiced their support for him publicly.
The Eagles (3-8-1) are mired in a four-game losing streak and are third in the NFC East entering Sunday’s game against the New Orleans Saints.
Wentz, 27, has been mired in the worst season of his career. The former No. 2 overall pick ranks first in the NFL interceptions (15) and sacks (46), 31st in completion percentage (58.1%) and 30th in yards per attempt (6.02).
Hurts played 33 snaps over the first 11 games, lining up all over the formation while being used mostly as a gadget player. With increasing calls for Hurts to take more snaps in recent weeks, the former Oklahoma star saw an increase in first-team reps at quarterback before Philadelphia’s Week 12 game against Seattle, and replaced Wentz off the bench last Sunday against Green Bay.