The National Football League sports a violent game that continues to leave its mark on each of its teams. As a whole, the League has been ravaged by injuries to many of its top players and this week that trend continued, this time impacting the Philadelphia Eagles.
Carson Wentz has been a breath of fresh air for a franchise that has seen its share of adversity over the last few years. He has played under the label of everyone from John Elway to Ben Roethlisberger, but now he will have to work his way back from injury like them, too. In an unfortunate turn of events, Wentz tore is ACL yesterday in what was unquestionably the biggest game of the year. While trying to score a touchdown when the play broke down, he continued his tough guy mentality by diving into the end zone, but this time it didn’t have the same outcome.
Now, the team turns to Nick Foles to lead them on their journey and hope he can revisit his past success. He came in and did exactly what he was supposed to do yesterday, don’t turn the ball over and make good decisions. We will forget about the illegal throw to the offensive lineman who hasn’t caught a ball in his entire career. On a serious note, Foles helped finish the job and put an exclamation point to the NFC East crown. Obviously, he is the starter, but who backs him up? Nate Sudfeld?
Let’s first ask ourselves what the backup quarterback will mean to this team for the foreseeable future. We need a guy who can step in for our starting quarterback should he go down with an injury. Let’s not forget that there were whispers that Foles had an elbow injury in the preseason that could have kept him from playing this season. He looked fine yesterday, but something to definitely note as he’s asked to carry the load now. Another thing to elaborate on is the pressure that comes along with post-season football and the importance of games leading to the ultimate goal of the Lombardi Trophy. The Eagles and their fans put a huge emphasis on the backup to Wentz, so let’s not discount this same theory just because you may not like the top name available.
Speaking of the biggest name on the open market, this brings us to the Colin Kaepernick debate. Looking at where we are as a team and where we are headed, the main focus here needs to be about football and only football. Looking at all the available options, the Eagles would be hard-pressed to find a better option than having Kaepernick don the green uniform. Is he still in shape? Can he still play? He’s reportedly working out in New Jersey, which would make a workout that much easier to happen.
You have to look at the facts. If you do so with an open mind and take politics out of the argument, it’s a simple concept to understand. Kap has a 4-2 post-season record and Super Bowl experience against a very stingy Ravens defense. One in where he compiled the following statistics: 16-28, 302 yards, 1 TD; 62 rushing yards, 1 TD. If the 49ers had been able to pull off the comeback, it would be hard to argue for anyone else to take home MVP honors. Forgive me if I don’t trust Nate Sudfeld to put similar statistics under pressure. Even more than the stats, it’s about trust. A trust that only a veteran player can give you. We hear about the cliché all the time, a veteran backup means a lot. Well, in this circumstance it does.
In a day full of whispers and speculation, Hall of Fame wide receiver Chris Carter had the following to say…
Just remember that Foles isn’t made of steel and the Eagles’ offensive line is far from perfect. Wentz was able to mask a lot of the issues with his legs, something Foles will not be able to do. Am I saying that Kap should be the starter? NO! What I am saying is that by Foles being less mobile it makes him more susceptible to getting hit just like you when his jaw was almost taken off by the Rams’ front. With this as a concern, having a guy like Kap to step in makes me feel a little more at ease.
As I continue to watch the gruesome highlights of guys who shouldn’t be bagging groceries, let alone wearing an NFL jersey and play in this League, I continue to ask about Kaepernick. I continue to ask why. Now it impacts my team, my city and their goals. So, yes, I feel the Eagles need to reach out and, if possible, make this a reality.
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