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Weighing the Wisdom of Bears Trading for Carson Wentz

The Bears are in a situation where they have to come up with a quarterback and they don't appear able to trade for some of the top names available, but is Carson Wentz the best possible answer?

With rumors flying of a Bears and Colts bidding war to try and obtain Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz in a trade, it's a good time to consider just what the Bears would be getting with such a move.

For one, this is a quarterback who had beaten plenty of good teams, unlike Mitchell Trubisky.

You can count on one hand the number of winning teams Trubisky beat as a starter, and with a single digit or two the number he actually beat and didn't simply come along for the ride on his defense's effort.

Wentz has put up big stats at times, but most recently struggled through a 2020 season when Philadelphia's entire team disintegrated and coach Doug Pederson was fired.

The Eagles had been reported by Ed Kracz of Eagle Maven as looking to make a trade earlier this week and on Friday ESPN's Tim McManus reported the team has already received some "aggressive offers."

If a trade is made, it wouldn't become official until the start of the new league year March 17, just like the Rams-Lions deal involving Matthew Stafford and Jared Goff.

Wins

Wentz has done plenty to actually beat these good teams and he had three very good seasons statistically before regressing completely to a career low last year.

In his rookie year of 2016, Wentz beat the Steelers, Cowboys, Giants and Falcons and all four made the playoffs.

In 2017 he suffered the torn ACL that sidelined him during the Super Bowl run by Nick Foles but first beat Dallas, Carolina and the Chargers and all three had winning records.

In 2018 he beat the Colts, a playoff team.

In 2019 they beat the Bills and won their last four games to take the division title. They also beat the Packers 34-27 for one of threre Packer losses.

The Eagles are 35-32-1 in games he started.

Injuries

Wentz was a big part of getting the Eagles into the playoffs in 2017, 2018 and 2019, but then he suffered injuries each time and played no role or almost no role in the postseason. He missed six games in 2018, including two with a back injury and four of the final five plus the playoff games with the Bears and Saints. In 2017, he suffered a torn ACL in the 10th game and sat out the last six and Foles' playoff run.

In the playoffs in 2019, he suffered a head injury on a Jadeveon Clowney hit while scrambling only four passes into the game and was removed.

Stats

Wentz is not particularly accurate at 62.68% (1,562 of 2,492) and has 16,811 passing yards with 113 TDs to 50 interceptions. His career passer rating is 89.2. By comparison, Trubisky's is 87.2. His career yards per pass attempt is a mediocre 6.75

Last year Wentz was horrible and led the NFL in interceptions with 15. He threw 16 TD passes and had career-worst numbers in passer rating (72.8), sacks taken (50) and yards per attempt (6.0).

From 2017 through 2019, he had a 98.3 passer rating with 81 TDs to 21 interceptions, 64.4% completions.

Money

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The Eagles would take a $34 million dead cap hit but they'd realize a savings of $25 million by making a move. The Bears would need to absorb about $25.4 million for next season and then the remainder of his four-year deal over subsequent years according to Spotrac.com

The Drama

Wentz and Bears quarterbacks coach John DeFilippo worked together in 2016-17 in Philadelphia under coach Doug Pederson and offensive coordinator Frank Reich. DeFilippo was tough on Wentz but several reports have said it was more of a tough-love relationship with DeFilippo simply being hard on Wentz for his own good. It wasn't a case where they didn't get along or were feuding.

However, the benching Foles went through this past season seemed to bring out his worst and he became upset over Jalen Hurts replacing him.

Analysis

Although Wentz has had a stretch of games when he was as efficient as some of the league's best and he has beaten plenty of good teams, he's never maintained this type of play for a long period. He's also had injuries at bad times and has even been involved in some off-field situations with coaches or teammates.

Is this like Mitchell Trubisky and Jay Cutler all rolled up into one?

Or is he simply a promising player who could flourish if put back together with the former assistant coach who brought out the best in him?

The Bears are desperate because they don't have enough to outbid anyone for Deshaun Watson. Dak Prescott will be tagged or signed by his current team.

A Las Vegas newspaper report says they couldn't get Derek Carr unless they give up two first rounders and the Raiders are able to talk the Texans into giving Watson to them for four first-rounders.

They're too far back in the draft to come up with one of the top three or maybe top four quarterbacks.

It's known Ryan Pace was highly intrigued by Wentz's abilities in 2016 but it all comes down to what they have to give up for the quarterback and how desperate the team(s) they're bidding against is or are.

An NFL Network report confirmed the Colts have been in talks with the Eagles, so if the Bears are to make a move they're going to have to outbid at least one team for a player who ultimately has failed elsewhere.

If they don't do it, then who's left?

Twitter: BearDigest@BearsOnMaven