Carson Wentz knows you’re frustrated.
He’s frustrated too. But he is also confident he’s going to turn it around.
Things haven’t gone to plan this year. The Eagles are 5-6 with five game remaining and Wentz is coming off one of the worst games of his NFL career. Sure, the offensive line struggled on Sunday and his backup receivers ran sloppy routes, but Wentz needs to play better. He knows that.
In the summer, Wentz talked about the importance of letting go of stress and playing with a sense of freedom. He hasn’t looked very free recently.
On Wednesday, I asked Wentz if it has been harder to play stress-free over the last couple of weeks. His answer was interesting.
Not really,” Wentz responded. “Just because, shoot, there’s always stress, there’s always pressure, there’s always that stuff. For me, just to be confident in who I am, the good, the bad, the ugly. I don’t really get caught up in what people say, think, whether it’s good, whether it’s bad. I’m confident in who I am as a player.
“You’re going to go through highs and lows, you’re going to go through peaks and valleys. For me, just being confident in who I am as a person, as a player and as a man of God. That’s really all that matters.
“I have so much confidence in my ability to turn this around and do my best and get these things fixed, that I don’t get too high or too low going through these things.
This is definitely a valley for Wentz, but he’s trying to keep his routine.
That means that on Sunday night, he spent time with his family and then watched the game tape before he went to sleep.
“I try to stay the same whether we’re undefeated or completely defeated,” he said. “It doesn’t really matter.”
When Wentz watched the game tape on Sunday night and then again on Monday morning, he had the same takeaway: He can’t cough the ball up. Against the Seahawks, he fumbled three times, lost two, and threw two interceptions.
Wentz acknowledged that it’s a constant learning process to figure out when he should try to extend plays and when he should concede them. No matter what he does, Wentz insisted, he needs to learn how to make sure he doesn’t turn it over.
It can sometimes be a trap that players and coaches fall into, saying, “If we take away X, it wasn’t that bad.” But in this case it makes some sense. If the Eagles don’t turn the ball over on Sunday — at least not five times! — they have a much better chance to win. Taking away turnovers wouldn’t solve all their offensive problems but it would be a good start.
The next three games — at Miami, vs. New York Giants, at Washington — are extremely winnable for the Eagles. Those three teams are all 2-9, so the Eagles have a chance to turn things around.
For now, though, Wentz heard your boos on Sunday. And he understands them.
“They have a right to be frustrated,” Wentz said. “They play money to sit in those seats, they pay money to cheer us on and they are so passionate about it. And I’m the same way. When they’re frustrated, I’m frustrated too. So, for me, just to walk that fine line and not get too high or low no matter what it is.
“Without a doubt, they have the right to be frustrated when we’re slumping the way we are these last two weeks. At the same time, I’m excited to go forward and hopefully they’re excited to see us turn this thing around.”
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