The Indianapolis Colts made one of the boldest trades in years when they acquired former Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz with the expectation of trying to rehabilitate his value after an awful 2020 season that saw Doug Pederson get the ax.
Wentz was a Pro Bowler and MVP candidate when Colts head coach Frank Reich was his offensive coordinator in Philadelphia, and the hope is that if Wentz is re-installed into an offense that makes him feel comfortable, he could be able to return to the form that made him one of the best young quarterbacks in the league.
Indianapolis also offered Wentz a chance to escape from a hostile environment in Philly, as a team that was, and remains, fraying at the seams isn’t as conducive to success as a Colts team that appears unified in their pursuit of a division crown. Wentz even admitted as much at practice.
An excited Wentz claimed that the Colts’ culture is “different,” hinting that his new locker room “feels like a family.” Considering how new stories continue to come out that show just how chaotic things were behind the scenes in Philadelphia at nearly every turn, it’s clear Wentz is trying to send some sort of message.
Colts QB Carson Wentz is indirectly shading his former team.
On the field, Wentz was by no means set up for success, as his offensive line was in tatters and his coaching staff was overworked due to the fact they didn’t have a nominal offensive coordinator. Any quarterback would find it hard to overcome such an appalling lack of linemen and receivers.
Off the field, Pederson and GM Howie Roseman were at each other’s throats. Some friction over the decision to use a second-round pick on a quarterback like Jalen Hurts only added to the frustration. At the very least, everyone in the Colts organization seems to be in lockstep with one another.
Wentz appears to be much more relaxed at the start of spring practice based on his performance and candor.
Turns out when you have a half-decent team around you and your direct bosses aren’t fighting with each other, you might perform a bit better at your job. That’s one of the benefits playing with a “family” like Indianapolis brings.
Priority No. 1 this offseason should be making sure Wentz feels comfortable with this group of guys, something that he clearly was not in Philadelphia over the last few years. Accomplishing that goal could allow his arm talent to shine, which could be the driving force on a Colts team with legitimate playoff aspirations.