Carson Wentz has been an unmitigated disaster for the Philadelphia Eagles this year. After his passer rating fell sharply from 93.1 in 2019 to 72.8 in 2020, head coach Doug Pederson decided to bench him in favor of rookie Jalen Hurts.
Hurts has shown significant promise since being promoted, and Wentz has repeatedly expressed his lack of interest in being a long-term back-up, putting Philly in something of a bind given that he is signed to a difficult-to-move four-year, $128 million contract.
This week, former NFL general manager Mike Tannenbaum appeared on ESPN’s Get Up and offered a solution that would solve everyone’s problems.
“Right now, if Carson Wentz was traded before he earned a roster bonus, he would count $33.8 million on Philly’s cap next year,” Tannenbaum said.
“However, under the rules, if Carson Wentz wrote a check for $20 million before the end of the 2020 league year, the Eagles will get a credit next year, meaning he would only be $13.8 on their cap in 2021, which is a very reasonable number.”
If Wentz were to go to a team in desperate need of a quarterback, like the New England Patriots, that could be the key to everyone walking away happy.
“The contract to me would be really easy,” Tannenbaum continued.
“Keep paying Carson Wentz $32 million a year, which is what he was making, and have the [Indianapolis] Colts pay him a signing bonus of $20 million, so he is now made whole, and he keeps going on this contract.
“If I’m the Colts or the Patriots in that matter, I’m paying roughly $38 million a year, which is 32 million a year for three years plus the 20 million, which is high but still less than Deshaun Watson.”
That is probably the best Philly could hope for in this situation.
“If I’m Philadelphia, I have a very manageable dead money number of $13.8 million,” Tannenbaum said.
“I also have the potential of getting two second-round picks for a player that, let’s face it, needs a fresh start, and you still have Jalen Hurts.
“If I’m the Colts or the Patriots, I now have a young quarterback 27-years-old who has played well, and I’ve given up reasonable draft compensation, and I’m paying him a little bit more than I want. But now I have the player I need for the next three years under contract.”
— Mike Tannenbaum (@RealTannenbaum) December 30, 2020
This is going to be an interesting offseason for the Eagles and Wentz. Given how much organizations need a franchise quarterback, there is an argument to be made that there will be no better time to get max value for Wentz.
What will Philly ultimately be able to pick up, though? Time will tell.