It has been pretty hard to evaluate Carson Wentz this season.
While there’s certainly room for improvement, Wentz hasn’t gotten much help. Many of his weapons have been injured and when healthy, they’ve been missing plays.
Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll hasn’t struggled to evaluate Wentz this season.
The last time Carroll faced Wentz, Wentz was 11 games into what was likely going to be an MVP season before his ACL injury the following week.
Carroll thinks Wentz is still that same guy.
“I think he’s an amazing player,” Carroll said on a conference call with Philly reporters this week. “I love his competitiveness, his playmaking ability, his power and strength. He doesn’t get knocked down easily, he can get out of problems and cause the second play to happen with his scrambles, eyes are downfield. He runs well when he needs to.
“I just think he’s a fantastic player. I don’t see any difference in what he is now to what he was before.”
The numbers beg to differ. Here’s a look at Wentz’s stats through 11 games when he faced the Seahawks in 2017 and a look at his stats in 2019:
2017: 11 games, 60.17%, 2,657 yards (241.5 per game), 28 TDs, 5 INTs, 104.0 rating
2019: 10 games, 61.22%, 2,274 yards(227.4 per game), 16 TDs, 4 INTs, 91.4 rating
To casual observers, Wentz clearly isn’t playing at that MVP-type level he was in 2017. But trying to evaluate Wentz has been a struggle this season because of the lack of help he’s been getting from his skill position players, especially at receiver.
Even offensive coordinator Mike Groh said the coaching staff, during its evaluation process, factors in the weapons around Wentz as well as the expected results.
“I think you have to factor both of the things, keep both those things in mind,” Groh said.
Sure, opposing coaches generally say nice things about the players they’re going to face, but Carroll seemed to be genuine and said more than he probably had to.
So while it’s pretty clear that Wentz needs to play better, it’s also notable that Carroll was effusive in his praise.
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