Eagles

QB Nate Sudfeld makes 'very tough call' to join Eagles, leave Redskins

QB Nate Sudfeld makes 'very tough call' to join Eagles, leave Redskins

After the Eagles drafted Carson Wentz last year, they messaged some of the other quarterbacks in the 2016 draft and wished them luck.

One of those guys was Nate Sudfeld.

“I had a formal interview (with the Eagles) at the combine and I got to know Coach (Frank) Reich and (quarterbacks coach John) DeFilippo ... Coach Flip ... I still can’t pronounce his name very well," Sudfeld said.

"Got to know them pretty well in the draft process. Obviously they drafted Carson, but they still texted me and said, 'Hey good luck, you’re going to have a great career.' They always kind of seemed to be interested and have my back."

They're still interested. 

The Eagles snatched Sudfeld from the Redskins on Sunday, signing him to their practice squad a day after the Redskins released him and then tried to re-sign him to their practice squad.

Sudfeld spent all of last year on the Redskins' active roster and expected to be back in Washington this year. But when the Redskins cut him, Sudfeld had to re-think everything.

"It was a very tough call," he said. "Honestly, it was really sad leaving someplace where you make so many friendships and relationships. I love the coaches, I love everyone there. I just talked to my agent, talked to my family (and) just felt like this was the best decision for myself and really excited for the opportunity.

"It's tough because I have nothing but love for everyone over there. It’s just sad always to move on. It’s still pretty fresh. The equipment guys, the chefs, the lady at the front desk, everything like that. It’s really tough. 

"Being there all last year on the roster. I really love my time there and really appreciative of my time there."

So why is he here?

Sudfeld clearly believes he has a better opportunity to develop behind Wentz and Nick Foles and under this coaching staff than behind Kirk Cousins and Colt McCoy in Washington.

"I just felt like some new scenery and a different thing was the right thing at the right time," he said.

"It's a great spot for me to develop and continue to get reps and improve as a player. I'm trying to have a long career in the NFL. Everybody wants to play — as a quarterback especially — till their late 30s. 

"I'm trying not to get too overwhelmed with the 'now,' because I'm a 23-year-old guy. I was one of the youngest guys on the Redskins team, and I just have to do what’s right for me at the time and not be selfish or look into the future. Just what’s going to make me the best quarterback in the long run."

Sudfeld, a sixth-round pick out of Indiana last year, played well both last year and this year in the preseason. 

He combined to complete 61 of 109 passes (56 percent) for 598 yards with three TDs and no interceptions in six preseason games over the last two summers. 

And he did not expect to be released.

"Honestly, I was a little surprised," he said. "But I don’t want to say I didn’t go (back) there because it was ill will or anything. But I was a little surprised. But it is what it is. It’s a business. More and more teams are going with two quarterbacks.

"When they released me they said this was no indictment of you, we don't think any less of you, we just have some needs on defense, whatever that means. 

"I don't know. Who knows. It's a crazy league. Who knows how everything shakes out in a year or 10 years if I'm playing that long. I don't feel like any bridges are burned or anything. I still have a lot of love for everyone over there."

Obviously, the Eagles face Sudfeld's former team in five days in the season opener at FedEx Field.

Could the Eagles have acquired Sudfeld to pick his brain about the Redskins' offense?

"I think that's overrated," he said. "I haven’t really talked to anybody about the Redskins."

Then he paused and said, "Yet."

Eagles QB Carson Wentz favorite to win NFL MVP

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Eagles QB Carson Wentz favorite to win NFL MVP

Carson Wentz is in his second NFL season, but he could already be on his way to his first MVP award. 

At least, he's now the favorite. 

The Eagles' starting quarterback is now the favorite to win this year's NFL MVP award, according to Bovada. Wentz is just ahead of Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith. 

Here's the top five: 

1. Carson Wentz: +175
2. Alex Smith: +200
3. Tom Brady: +400
4. DeShaun Watson: +1,000
5. Russell Wilson: +1,200

Basically, this means that a $100 futures bet would win $175. Since Wentz pays out the least, he's the favorite. 

It's no surprise Wentz and Smith are atop this list. They have both led their teams to 5-1 records (top in the NFL) through six games. 

Wentz has completed 60.9 percent of his passes for 1,584 yards, 13 touchdowns, three interceptions and a passer rating of 99.6. He's well on his way to becoming the first Eagles quarterback to throw for 4,000 yards in a season. 

The last (and only) Eagles player to win an MVP came during the 1960 championship season, when quarterback Norm Van Brocklin took the award. 

The last player to win the MVP award in his second NFL season was Kurt Warner in 1999. But Warner had a long road to get to the NFL and was 28 years old in 1999. Wentz is just 24. 

Vegas isn't alone with the Wentz hype. According to Dick's Sporting Goods, the Eagles quarterback has the best-selling jersey of all NFL players. In another few months, those people might have the jersey of an MVP winner. 

Rob's Rants: Hey Philly, don't take the bait and feed the trolls

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Rob's Rants: Hey Philly, don't take the bait and feed the trolls

This week’s Rob’s Rants has a sole focus — or should I say a troll focus. It’s more of a public service announcement, if you will. I am imploring all Philadelphia sports fans: Don’t take the bait!

Trolling was around long before the advent of social media. Contrarians have been going against the grain and saying things they don’t even believe to invoke a reaction since the beginning of time. Or as far back as Jaromir Jagr’s rookie season. Same thing. 

Just six weeks into the NFL season, we’ve already heard from some of the usual suspects, who will go nameless in this post. I refuse to give them the attention and ratings they are so desperately begging for. You know who they are, I know who they are, don’t give them the satisfaction. Don’t continue to line their pockets. Don’t let yourself walk into their trap. A reply on Twitter or some other social platform, a tune in, a reaction, is a win for them.

So brace yourself for the inevitable national talking head contrarian with the hot take of, “Carson Wentz looks like a deer in headlights.” Or, “besides the Panthers, who have the Eagles played? Or, “they haven’t even won a playoff game since 2008 and the fans have them in the Super Bowl.”

The trolling won’t be reserved exclusively for Eagles fans either. Prepare yourselves, Sixers fans. As we embark on the start of the NBA season, the anti-process truthers are just lying in wait with pithy Joel Embiid barbs about minute restrictions or injuries or tanking. It’s only a matter of time before we get something like, “see what another year of tanking gets you? Markelle Fultz isn’t even good enough start.” It’s coming.

There’s a fine line between trolling and having a strong, thought-provoking, independent point of view. The goal of any good columnist, radio host, television host or analyst is to make you think or react. Whether you agree or disagree. But there is a cottage industry now of blowhards who don’t have an original, creative or sincere thought of their own. They are either told by a producer or boss or decide on their own to go after a city, player, or team ... one typically with a fan base that will be reactive. You don’t see a lot of shade thrown at the Atlanta Hawks. You know why? No one cares. Not even their fans. Say something about Carson Wentz or snowballs at Santa and loyal Philadelphia fans will go bonkers. Mission accomplished for the troll.

So revel in the Eagles' early season success. Be excited for the infusion of youth for the Flyers. And what could be if Embiid, Ben Simmons, Fultz and Dario Saric can actually stay on the court.

Soak it in. We appear to be exiting out of the dark days. Just be prepared for it and don’t allow yourself to be lured into the troll trap.