The Eagles have been the NFL’s black sheep for far too long. It doesn’t matter what the organization has accomplished just four years into the Doug Pederson era. It didn’t even matter that Andy Reid won 6 NFC East Titles, 1 NFC Championship, or that the Eagles had 5 NFC championship game appearances until it did. Several media outlets have completely dragged Carson Wentz through the mud due to an infatuation that they have with former Eagles QB Nick Foles.
Yes, Nick Foles did win a Super Bowl for the city of Philadelphia but it was Carson Wentz who did the dirty work. It was Wentz who put the team in a position to have home-field advantage but that’s all just forgotten, isn’t it? Even then, the world favored the Falcons…and the Vikings. Wentz is on a career path that has him aligned with some of the best to ever do it while Foles was just traded to Chicago Bears by the Jacksonville Jaguars. I understand that Wentz hasn’t had the best of luck of being there in the playoffs but its time to take last season for what it was – progress.
The disrespect is bigger than the Wentz foolishness, it affects the team as a whole now. From the Coach, who’s done a spectacular job in four seasons, to the running back who broke records but didn’t win Rookie of the year. Now, it seems like the disrespect has gotten to what seems to be a point of no return. Let’s take a look at where the team stands in three major accolades for the upcoming season.
Coach of the Year odds: +2600 (per FanDuel)
There’s absolutely no reason why Doug Pederson should not be in the top five of this category. Back in 2017, it was clear that Pederson should’ve been the Coach of the Year but the national media was too infatuated with the idea of Sean McVay. Pederson led his team to a Super Bowl victory after going 13-3 with his star QB out for the season after battling McVay’s team and handing them a loss in their own stadium. Pederson has gone to the playoffs in each of the last three seasons with a record of 4-2, obviously, the two losses have come in the last two seasons but think about how far this team has gone since just last season.
The front office has loaded up the offense, defense, and even the coaching staff in hopes of another Super Bowl victory. Pederson has all he needs now to be more than just a contender for the next several years but to stand on top and own the spotlight that’s so rightfully deserved. In his career as a head coach, Doug Pederson is 42-28. Even when dealing with the constant injuries that his team has endured in the last three years, Pederson has found ways to win at all costs. There are 14 coaches ahead of Pederson in the odds for Coach of the Year while being tied with four more.
MVP Odds: +1700
Wentz has been in this position for far too long. The 27-year-old QB is entering a pivotal season in his career. This is the first time in Carson’s pro career that he’ll have weapons that rival other teams receiving groups. Wentz started the offseason with only DeSean Jackson as the deep threat and is now entering training camp with 5 deep threats, three of them being rookies. The middle receiver is 29-year-old Marquise Goodwin who has elusive speed but has struggled to stay healthy for the past few seasons. There’s no denying that when Goodwin is healthy, his speed is unguardable by any defender. Now imagine pairing that with a young burner in Reagor and one of the greatest deep threats of all time in DeSean Jackson.
Wentz finished last season on a tear as he led his team to four straight wins to end the season as the NFC East champs. He was one of two QB’s to make the playoffs after throwing for 4,000 yards and not having a 1,000-yard receiver. The other QB was Pat Mahomes. Unfortunately, Wentz was later knocked out of his first playoff game due to a concussion after Clowney drove his helmet into Wentz’s. Wentz has five QB’s that have better odds than him right now with one of them being his NFC East rival, Dak Prescott.
Rookie of the Year odds: +2800
Let’s talk about the Skip Bayless’ favorite Eagle, Jalen Reagor. Reagor was mocked by many to be drafted by the Eagles with they traded back while several mocked him at 21. Let me tell you something about that, it doesn’t matter. Reagor is an Eagle now, by the choice of the Philadelphia Eagles and to be honest, all Eagles should be hyped. It’s been rumored that Eagles GM Howie Roseman and Doug Pederson have been speaking to Reagor regularly to introduce him to a playbook that involves him in every aspect of the field. So in layman’s terms, the Eagles are preparing for Reagor to be the focus of the receiving game with no disrespect to DeSean Jackson.
Reagor produced last season with QB’s that couldn’t hit a billboard sign even if it was right in front of them. Now, he’s playing with one of the great pure arms in all of football. While many other big-name rookies should have good years, Reagor is the only rookie that will be the sole focus of his offense. Lamb is surrounded by Gallup, Cooper, and Elliott. Jeudy will be lined up with Hamler and Sutton. There are currently 14 rookies that are ahead of Reagor in Fanduel’s odds but again, none may have the impact or workload that Reagor will have.
No matter which category you examine, the world is still sleeping on the Philadelphia Eagles…but the last time they truly embraced the underdog energy, something magical happened.
Listen to more of the discussion on this week’s episode of ‘Flippin the Birds’
Mandatory Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports