He may be verging on elite, but Carson Wentz still has one fatal flaw

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After Carson Wentz led the Eagles back from a deficit for the second week in a row, many media pundits and fans have boasting their own support of the fourth year quarterback.

Adversely, the Wentz “haters” have continued to be out in full force saying they demand more from the “$128 million man”.

Both sides of the argument have valid points.

The Great Start

On the pro-Wentz side, you have a quarterback who has thrown for at least one touchdown in 17 straight games. The last time he did not have a touchdown pass was the 48-7 debacle last season versus the Saints. In those 17 games, Wentz has 31 touchdowns and only seven interceptions. Here are some stats of notable quarterbacks during their last 17 games:

Name Passing Yards Passing TDs Interceptions Fumbles
Lamar Jackson 3403 35 6 11
Russell Wilson 4368 34 6 7
Dak Prescott 5088 31 12 5
Deshaun Watson 4535 30 11 10
Kirk Cousins 4080 31 6 10
Aaron Rodgers 4205 26 3 4
Matt Ryan 4879 34 14 10
Patrick Mahomes 5075 36 6 5
Tom Brady 4220 27 10 4
Drew Brees 4449 39 8 3
Phillip Rivers 4725 24 24 8
Carson Wentz 4201 31 8 16

In the last 17 games played for each of the quarterbacks above, Wentz ranks 10th out of 12 in passing yards, tied for sixth in touchdown passes, and has thrown the sixth fewest interceptions.

In his 54 career games, Wentz is the only quarterback in NFL history with 95 touchdown passes and 35 or fewer interceptions.

Out of all quarterbacks in NFL history in their first four seasons, Wentz is tied for ninth with those 95 touchdown passes and only has one less interception than Russell Wilson did. Of the 11 quarterbacks on the list, Wentz has the lowest interception percentage at 1.77%  Pretty historic start to his career.

The Not So Great Start

You may have noticed that I “forgot” to mention his fumbles on that list above.  I did not forget, I merely waited until this section. You can stop yelling at me.

Of those quarterbacks listed above, Wentz has the most fumbles through his last 17 games with 16.  The next closest is Lamar Jackson with 11, but it’s probably more understandable due to his playing style.

Despite how careful Wentz has been while throwing the football, he’s been the exact opposite while in the pocket.

Out of all quarterbacks in their first four years of their careers, Wentz is fifth in fumbles with 46. It could be assumed that if Wentz played as many games as he should have if he were healthy (64), he could be first on the list as first place is only 11 fumbles away.

Wentz led the league in fumbles during his rookie year with 14. He then followed that with nine in back to back seasons, and currently has 14 through 14 games. Daniel Jones leads the league with 15.

After Sunday’s game versus the Redskins, Wentz addressed his fumble that occurred late in the game, which was his third of the day:

They made a good play and I gotta protect the ball. I was trying to make a play and improvise and I gotta protect the ball.

Head coach Doug Pederson also addressed it during his Monday news conference, but also made it a team issue:

Yeah, it was unfortunate. I think we put the ball as an offense on the ground four times yesterday and that’s unacceptable, whether it’s the quarterback or receivers, whoever it might be, running back. We have to do a better job. Players have to understand the importance of the football. It’s obviously the most prized possession during the game. We have to protect it. [Wentz] understands that and we’re going to continue to talk.

One could argue that Wentz has the ball too long because he’s waiting for someone to get open downfield, which has been an issue all season.  Another could argue that Wentz hasn’t had the best protection from his offensive line this season.

But no one could argue that Wentz doesn’t need to work on his ball security.  He is often found trying to escape the pocket with only one hand on the ball.

Take a look at Bleeding Green Nation’s Michael Kist’s excellent breakdown of Wentz’s fumbles:

https://twitter.com/MichaelKistNFL/status/1207038342552018951?s=20

The Eagles were able to come back Sunday, thanks to Wentz’s heroics, but those turnovers can’t always be rectified.

They are about to face a very opportunistic Cowboys defense that’s looking to build some momentum after a strong game versus the Rams.  ome of those fumbles that are usually recovered by Wentz, may not go that way on Sunday.

For Wentz to continue is dominant start to his career, he must defeat the demons of his not so dominant start.  ith his band of misfit toys on offense, Wentz will try to prove himself worthy of elite status in the next two games.

Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

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