Carson Wentz Trade: Who Won?


Aiden Hayes '22, Edsman Staffer

The Philadelphia Eagles, fresh off a 4-11-1 2020-21 season, have traded former starting quarterback Carson Wentz to the Indianapolis Colts for a 2022 conditional second round pick and a 2021 third round pick. 

The trade comes after an extremely tough season from Wentz, who was the #2 overall pick in 2016. Wentz threw a career high 15 interceptions in only 12 games played and had a career low 57.4% completion percentage. Moreover, he was sacked 50 times in those 12 games, which could be attributed to poor offensive line play, but most Eagles fans chalk it up to Wentz holding the ball for far too long. In the last 4 games of the season, the Eagles gave Wentz’s starting position to Jalen Hurts. Hurts did not throw the ball exceptionally well with only a 52% completion rate, but his speed and ability to get out of sacks gave the Eagles’ offense new life. Hurts is also 6 years younger than Wentz and costs the team $1.5 million dollars a year compared to Wentz’s $32 million dollars a year. Moreover, Wentz’s relationship with Eagles’ management deteriorated after he was benched, to the point of asking for a trade. With all of this accounted for, it makes sense why the Eagles why try to trade Wentz away. 

Why would the Colts want him? The Colts are in a tough quarterback position themselves. Their 2020-21 season starter was Phillip Rivers, who recently retired. Their backup quarterback is Jacoby Brissett, who has proved his worth as a solid backup quarterback, but not as a starting quarterback for a team that wants to win the NFL. The 2021 NFL Draft is packed with quality quarterbacks, but not at pick #21 where the Colts draft. Outside of quarterback, the Colts are in a good place to continue winning over the next few years: 8th ranked defense, good offensive line, young and talented running backs, and a capable receiving core. With the trade, they can take a flyer on Wentz returning to his 2017 ways, when he was a Pro Bowler, which could potentially shoot them to contendership status. As well, the Eagles are taking on Wentz’s $33.8 million dollar dead cap, so the Colts will only have to assume Wentz’s contract extension, which gives them enough financial flexibility to make some splashes in free agency if they want to. 

Who won the trade?

The Colts. With proper coaching, Wentz can potentially return to his prior ways. Regardless of if Wentz does come back, it is a necessary risk given their current status as a team if they want to have a chance to contend. analyst Judy Battista said this, “If Reich can right Wentz, the Colts will have consistency at the most important position for years to come, and will be among the small handful of AFC teams that could challenge the Kansas City Chiefs. If the Colts can’t fix Wentz, they didn’t have to give up a top pick because the 2022 pick won’t turn into a first-rounder. If they can fix Wentz, that 2022 pick will be a low first-rounder and nobody will care because the Colts will be a playoff team for years.