North Dakota State

Carson Wentz, new TE from opposite sides of same rivalry

Carson Wentz, new TE from opposite sides of same rivalry

What’s the best way to squash an old rivalry? 

A couple emojis, of course. 

Not long after the Eagles traded up to No. 49 to take Dallas Goedert out of South Dakota State (see story), his new quarterback Carson Wentz, who once led rival North Dakota State, sent the tight end a series of text messages to congratulate him. 

“Yeah, he actually texted me right after I got picked,” Goedert said on a conference call with Philadelphia reporters Friday night. “We had a little conversation.”

The conversation between the 23-year-old tight end and his 25-year-old quarterback began with a couple of emojis, because … of course it did. 

“The first one was, ‘Let’s go homie with sunglasses and a pound-fist,’” Goedert said. 

The next message from Wentz said they have “some business to do,” to which Goedert replied, “I’m excited and can’t wait to get out there and play with you.” 

While they were once rivals, it seems like Wentz and Goedert are going to get along fine in Philadelphia. The two actually met earlier this spring, when Goedert visited the NovaCare Complex on his top-30 visit. (The Eagles also met with him at the combine and sent tight ends coach Justin Peelle to his pro day.) Wentz and Goedert met briefly in the hallway of the building and had a short chat. In addition to both being from the Dakotas and playing for rival colleges, they also share an agency. 

“I watched him a lot,” Goedert said. “He’s an incredible quarterback, the best in the NFL. To be able to play with him, that’s going to be a lot of fun.” 

Goedert is from Britton, South Dakota, and went to Britton-Hecla High School before he went to play for the Jackrabbits. After a redshirt season in 2013, Goedert had a slow progression until he broke out with two 1,000-yard seasons in 2016 and 2017. 

While the Eagles aren’t necessarily running their picks by Wentz before they make them, the franchise quarterback let his opinion about Goedert be known. He was high on Goedert after obviously seeing plenty of him over the past few years. 

“[Wentz has] been around the building, kind of talking to us about [Goedert] a little bit,” Eagles executive vice president of football operations Howie Roseman said. “He’s excited. I know just from the texts some of us have gotten, the quarterbacks are excited. Joe (Douglas) said it best, this is a friend for the quarterback.” 

Like North Dakota State, South Dakota State is also a Division I FCS school. Eagles personnel head Douglas said he liked the way Goedert dominated at that level. The Eagles said similar things when they drafted Wentz at No. 2 in 2016. 

During Goedert’s four years playing at South Dakota State, the Jackrabbits were 2-4 against the Bison, including two losses in the playoffs. But they did win the last two regular-season games in Goedert’s college career against the Bison. 

So just how big of a rivalry is there between the two programs? 

“It was big,” Goedert said. “It’s definitely our biggest rivalry. We were able to win two of the last three. We never beat Carson. But we were able to win the last two regular-season games and they were really big games for us, a lot of fun playing them.” 

Now, Goedert is hoping it’ll be just as fun to play with one at the next level. 

North Dakota still Eagles country, even without Wentz

USA Today Images

North Dakota still Eagles country, even without Wentz

The state of North Dakota was absolutely crazy for the Philadelphia Eagles back when Carson Wentz was the team's starting quarterback. But now that Wentz has gone down for the season with an injury... you know what? They're still Eagles crazy.

While oddsmakers, fans, and many in the national media have written the Birds off this season before their tilt tomorrow with the Falcons — one in which they'll be without their MVP-caliber leader — North Dakota fans are still riding the wagon.

The Ringer today revisited Wentz and the Eagles' receivers trip to North Dakota this past summer. We wrote about that adventure here and here when it happened.

Kevin Clarke recently caught back up with sports news director in Fargo, Beth Hoole, and learned that the Eagles have overtaken the Vikings as the NFL talk of the town.

Hoole said the Eagles have since become something of a phenomenon in Fargo. Nothing can touch North Dakota State football for attention in town, and to a lesser extent North Dakota hockey, but the Eagles are trying. The local sporting goods store, Hoole said, has more Eagles gear than anything. Fargo has pushed aside the Minnesota Vikings in favor of the Eagles, and the Philly love is not just directed towards Wentz — residents can be seen around town wearing jerseys of various players.

The mayor of Bismarck, North Dakota, Mike Seminary, was a guest on 94 WIP yesterday to say the same thing. North Dakota still has the Eagles' backs.

It's good to have supporters.

Carson Wentz hopes teammates learn Fargo is 'not just a frozen wasteland'

Carson Wentz hopes teammates learn Fargo is 'not just a frozen wasteland'

Carson Wentz didn't exactly bring his receivers to a tropical destination this week. 

But Fargo was a balmy 84 degrees on Tuesday. 

The Eagles' quarterback has been with many of his skill position players in his home state of North Dakota. Specifically, the Birds have been working out in Fargo, the home of North Dakota State (see story).  

On Tuesday, Valley News Live in Fargo caught up with Wentz at one of his workouts. 

So how are his teammates liking North Dakota?

"They love it," Wentz said. "Check their Twitter. They love it."

Last year, the Eagles' quarterbacks and skill position players met in San Diego. This year, while the destination is less tropical, the Eagles have still been having fun, as evidenced by their social media accounts. Jordan Matthews has long petitioned for these workouts to take place in Wentz's home state; Matthews really wanted to see what North Dakota was all about. 

So what does Wentz want his teammates to learn about Fargo this week? 

"I want them to know that it's a beautiful place and the people here are amazing," Wentz said. "I think Torrey (Smith) tweeted it yesterday [about] the nicest people. And there's actually things to do and it's not just a frozen wasteland like people think. It's a great place." 

It looks like Wentz's mission is working. 

"It's been great," Alshon Jeffery said. "Everyone around here has been great in Fargo. I mean, we love it out here. And it's great for our team, coming out here with Carson to see how he's living, see what's going on around here. It's great. I mean, it reminds me a little bit of back home because I'm from a small town (St. Matthews, South Carolina) as well." 

And how has it been to work with Wentz? 

"Carson's an awful guy," Jeffery joked. "I mean, nah ... Awesome. Everyone around here loves him. As you can see, there's a great crowd showing out here. Everywhere we go, he's the man."