Carson Wentz Won't Be Benched by Eagles, Per Doug Pederson: 'He Is Our Starter'

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistNovember 22, 2020

Philadelphia Eagles' head coach Doug Pederson talks with Carson Wentz (11) during a timeout against the New York Giants during an NFL football game, Thursday, Oct. 22, 2020, in Philadelphia. The Eagles defeated the Giants 22-21. (AP Photo/Rich Schultz)
Rich Schultz/Associated Press

Carson Wentz will remain the Philadelphia Eagles' starting quarterback despite another lackluster showing in a 22-17 defeat to the Cleveland Browns on Sunday.

"No questions about it. He is our starter," head coach Doug Pederson told reporters after the game.

Wentz finished 21-of-35 for 235 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions. He was also sacked five times by a Browns defense that was without Myles Garrett.

His second interception was costly as it came on 1st-and-goal with the Eagles down 12 points late in the fourth quarter.

Wentz has thrown an NFL-high 14 interceptions, and his one fumble Sunday brings his season total to four, tied for most in the league. The 27-year-old is having the worst season of his career.

If the Eagles were to bench Wentz, they wouldn't need to provide much justification since his production speaks for itself.

The problem for Philadelphia is that the offensive line will stay the same with a different quarterback under center.

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Barely one month into the year, the unit was already ravaged by injuries, which has led to Wentz facing almost constant pressure. With Sunday's game, the Eagles have allowed 40 sacks, four more than the Cincinnati Bengals in second place.

Great quarterbacks can work around a bad offensive line—Russell Wilson is a perfect example. Wentz isn't a great quarterback, so Philly's leaky pass protection exacerbates his issues in the pocket.

The alternative to starting Wentz is relying on either Nate Sudfeld or Jalen Hurts. Sudfeld hasn't thrown a pass in a regular-season game since 2018, and putting a rookie behind this O-line might be a recipe for disaster.

It looks as though the Eagles will have to lean on Wentz the rest of the way before general manager Howie Roseman is faced with a big question in the offseason.