Wentz joins elite company with 1st Pro Bowl nod

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Wentz joins elite company with 1st Pro Bowl nod

Nine days after his season ended with a torn ACL, Carson Wentz was officially recognized as one of the NFL’s best when he was named to the NFC Pro Bowl team.

Wentz, 11 days shy of his 25th birthday, joins Drew Brees and Russell Wilson as the NFC quarterbacks. He was the leading vote recipient among the three NFC quarterbacks.

Wentz is the fourth different Eagles quarterback named to a Pro Bowl team in the last decade, following Donovan McNabb, whose final Pro Bowl came in 2009, Michael Vick in 2010 and Nick Foles — the Eagles’ current quarterback — in 2013.

No other team has had more than two Pro Bowl quarterbacks during that span.

Wentz went 11-2 in 13 starts and broke Sonny Jurgensen’s 56-year-old franchise record of 32 touchdown passes in a season on his final pass of the season — a TD to Alshon Jeffery against the Rams.

He finished the season with a 60 percent completion percentage, 33 TDs and seven interceptions, 3,296 passing yards and a 101.9 passer rating.

Wentz joins Brett Favre, Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers and Matt Ryan as only the fifth quarterback in NFL history to throw at least 32 TD passes in a season with seven or fewer interceptions.

Among quarterbacks with 1,000 or more career pass attempts, Wentz now ranks seventh in NFL history with a 2.01 interception percentage (2.01 every 100 attempts), a fraction behind former teammate Sam Bradford (1.97) and a fraction ahead of Foles (2.02). His TD percentage (4.68) is 17th best in NFL history.

Wentz is one of six quarterbacks in NFL history in the top 20 in both INT and TD percentage. The others are Rodgers, Brady, Derek Carr, Wilson and Foles.

Wentz opened the season with six touchdowns and two interceptions in the Eagles' first four games before really heating up and throwing 27 touchdowns and five interceptions in the next nine games.

Only Brady, Rodgers and Brees have also thrown 27 or more TDs and five or fewer INTs in any nine-game span in NFL history.

Wentz goes into 2018 with an 18-11 career won-lost record. He's already the seventh-winningest quarterback in franchise history and with two more wins will pass Bobby Thomason and Norm Van Brocklin and tie Vick and Roy Zimmerman and trail only Norm Snead (28), Tommy Thompson (38), Randall Cunningham (63), Ron Jaworski (69) and McNabb (92).

Wentz takes a streak of 15 consecutive games with one or more touchdowns and one or fewer interceptions into next year. That's the sixth longest such streak in NFL history and six shy of the record of 21 set over the 2015 through 2017 seasons by Ryan.

Wentz was one of four first-time Eagles Pro Bowlers announced Tuesday evening. Brandon Brooks, Lane Johnson and Zach Ertz also received the honor for the first time (see story).

Other Eagles quarterbacks who've made the Pro Bowl team are Thomason (1953, 1956), Adrian Burk (1954, 1955), Van Brocklin (1958, 1959, 1960), Jurgensen (1961), Snead (1965), Roman Gabriel (1973), Mike Boryla (1975), Jaworski (1980), Cunningham (1988-90), McNabb (2000-04, 2010), Vick (2010) and Foles (2013).

Forget empty Day 2 of draft, Eagles hoping to find gold in Day 3

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Forget empty Day 2 of draft, Eagles hoping to find gold in Day 3

The Eagles are scheduled to have a pretty boring Day 2 of the draft this year. Because after they pick at No. 32, they don’t have another selection until the 31st pick of the fourth round. 

That means 98 players will be taken between the Eagles’ first and second picks. And they’ll have to watch other teams pick that entire Friday (Rounds 2-3) without them … unless they make a move. 

“We’re not looking at it like we’re sitting out on Friday,” Eagles de facto GM Howie Roseman said. “We’re going through our draft process looking at every scenario. When we get to Friday, we get to Friday.” 

Even if the Eagles don’t make a move, they’ll be plenty busy on Saturday, the final day of the draft. They have two fourth-round picks and one pick in the fifth, sixth and seventh rounds. 

Eagles personnel head Joe Douglas showed up to his media availability with a stat ready to go to illustrate the importance of Day 3. 

“We’re excited that we have five picks on Saturday,” Douglas said. “When you look at the Super Bowl, there’s 22 starters that were third-round picks or lower. Of those 22, 18 of them were fourth-round picks or lower. So 18 starters in the Super Bowl this year were fourth-round picks or lower, including six of them that were undrafted free agents. We choose to keep the glass half full.” 

Douglas is right on all those stats — 22 of 44 starters in the Super Bowl were drafted in the third or lower and 18 of them would be considered Day 3 picks. Not bad. 

Here’s how the Super Bowl starters broke down by round: 1-10, 2-12, 3-4, 4-4, 5-3, 6-3, 7-2, UDFA-6. 

The Eagles accounted for seven of the 18 players who were drafted in the fourth round or later, so the Patriots were the ones who found even more value late in drafts. And of those seven, just three were original Eagles — Halapoulivaati Vaitai, Jason Kelce and Jalen Mills. 

Of the six undrafted players who started in the Super Bowl, two were from the Eagles — LeGarrette Blount and Rodney McLeod. Neither was an original Eagle, but the Birds also relied heavily on running back Corey Clement, who was an undrafted rookie last season. 

With a dearth of high draft picks, it would make sense if the Eagles attack the undrafted market following the draft, but Douglas thinks it won’t be as easy as many might think. 

“You would think because we’re coming off a Super Bowl, we don’t have a second or third round pick that it would be a lot easier after the draft,” Douglas said. “But my experience coming off a Super Bowl, it’s sometimes harder to get guys to commit to your roster because agents and players have a perceived notion that it’s going to be that much tougher to make the team. I think that’s going to be a challenge. I think that’s going to be a challenge for us and we know it and we’re going to attack it.”

The Eagles in recent years have shown a willingness to pony up significant money to entice undrafted players to sign with them and if Douglas is right, they might need to do it again to land some this year. 

Either way, the Eagles know how important Day 3 and beyond can be. So when they’re bored on Day 2, they don’t plan on losing focus. 

Eagles reward Super Bowl MVP Nick Foles with reworked contract

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Eagles reward Super Bowl MVP Nick Foles with reworked contract

The Eagles gave Nick Foles a little raise on Friday, reworking the Super Bowl MVP’s contract, a league source confirmed. 

Basically, the Eagles are rewarding Foles after he helped the franchise win its first-ever Super Bowl a few months ago. 

Foles, 29, is still entering the final year of his contract with the Eagles, but the new deal also includes a mutual option for the 2019 season, a source confirmed to NBC Sports Philadelphia. The mutual option will still allow Foles the possibility to test the free agent market next season, but could leave the door open to a possible return beyond this upcoming season. 

Mike Garafolo and Ian Rapoport from NFL Network first reported the revised contract, which includes a $2 million signing bonus and “several millions in incentives if he’s the starter and hits various benchmarks,” according to Rapoport. 

That part makes a ton of sense. If for some reason Carson Wentz isn’t ready to play in 2018 or if he goes down again, Foles will have a chance to earn what might be closer to starter money. 

Foles was set to earn a base salary of $4 million in 2018, with a salary cap hit of $7.6 million on the contract before Friday’s renegotiation. 

Wentz and Foles grew very close last season — third-string QB Nate Sudfeld too — and have both been very selfless in a situation that would be awkward for many others in the league. But both have been incredibly selfless throughout the entire process. Just this week, Wentz admitted he had to fight jealousy but was truly happy for his teammate and friend, who became the Super Bowl hero (see story)

Earlier on Friday, Foles tweeted out this photo with his wife and daughter from the NovaCare Complex. That’s a $2 million smile.