Silence Speaks Volumes with Carson Wentz

The Eagles QB did nothing to refute a report that he wants out of his messy situation in Philadelphia
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PHILADELPHIA - Carson Wentz “politely” declined to talk with reporters during the first (and hopefully last) virtual cleanout day after a disappointing 4-11-1 season in which the veteran quarterback was benched for rookie Jalen Hurts.

The silence spoke loudly as almost a tacit confirmation of a report from ESPN's Chris Mortensen claiming that Wentz's relationship with the organization is "fractured" and that the former No. 2 overall pick will request a trade this offseason, something complicated by his massive contract and benching.

If Wentz believed the Eagles remained in play for his future he could have easily distanced himself from the report, so staying quiet seems like a calculated strategy as his agency tries to work out an exit plan with Howie Roseman and Jeffery Lurie.

Roseman was asked Monday if he would consider trading a player thought to be the face of the franchise four months ago.

"(The season is) so raw," said the GM. "Incredibly disappointing, even when we thought of how the season would go, I can't tell you there's any situation where we felt like we would be where we are today sitting here.

"We have to come back and look at it with fresh eyes. We are going to spend the week evaluating our players, with our coaches, with our personnel staff, with our front office. We do that in every level like we talk to the trainer about how they are interacting, our strength coaches, our performance coaches, our PR, security, everywhere, and we just have to do a deep dive on every position."

Roseman did finally get to a little more specificity.

"In terms of Carson, I don't think it's a secret that we moved up for him (in the 2016 draft) because of what we thought about him as a person, as a player," he said. "We gave him that extension (in 2019) because of the same things. And so, when you have players like that, they are like fingers on your hand. You can't even imagine that they are not part of you; that they are not here. That's how we feel about Carson."

The feeling is not mutual evidently, although coach Doug Pederson has also continued to claim the relationship can be salvaged.

"I'm not going to speak for Carson, obviously but I can speak for myself and say that, yeah, the relationship is good," he said on Monday. "It's fine. It's something that we're going to continue to build upon, and listen, I know Carson's disappointed. It's not the season that he had anticipated. It's not the season I had anticipated as the head coach. There were a lot of moving parts. It's not about one guy here. It takes all of us and that's something that we've stressed a lot here."

Wentz had his worst season as a pro this season, finishing with career lows in completion percentage (57.4), yards (2,620), and passer rating (72.8) before being benched in favor of Hurts in the second half of the Dec. 6 game against Green Bay.

Hurts finished the season 1-3 with a 77.5 passer rating but did give the offense a bit of a spark with his running ability.

Everything is on the table if Lurie approves of the Eagles moving forward without Wentz, understanding there will be a $34 million dead-money hit no matter what happens as far as contract tweaks with a new team.

What Wentz could do is help the salary-cap implications in an effort to make it a little more palatable for the Eagles to move on and that looks to be the goal from the QB's camp.

Pederson, though, continues to insist he wants to right the ship with Wentz moving forward.

"I've been hired as the head coach," he said. "I've been challenged as the head coach; personally challenged myself to get things right, to get him right, and to make sure that as we move forward that we're doing everything in the best interests of the team.

 "And I know we can do that and obviously surrounding the quarterback position with the right guys with the right men and that's also something that we're going to work on this offseason."

John McMullen contributes Eagles coverage for SI.com's EagleMaven and is the NFL Insider for JAKIB Media. You can listen to John every Tuesday and Thursday on "The Middle" with Eytan Shander, Harry Mayes, and Barrett Brooks on SportsMap Radio and PhillyVoice.com. He’s also the host of Extending the Play on AM1490 in South Jersey. You can reach him at jmcmullen44@gmail.com or on Twitter @JFMcMullen

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