Why Carson Wentz was the biggest steal of the 2016 Draft

The Los Angeles Rams are wondering whether they made the right pick in drafting Jared Goff, who has yet to start a game. The Cleveland Browns, on the other hand, are kicking themselves after they traded their pick to the Philadelphia Eagles and with Robert Griffin III’s injury.  After Wentz’s 278-yard, two touchdown performance against those same Browns that didn’t think highly enough of him to select him, “The City of Brotherly Love” has opened their arms to the 2nd overall pick.  With a win tonight, Carson Wentz further solidified his starter status and prove that he was the biggest steal of the draft.

Why would anyone think that Carson Wentz could be considered a “steal.”  After all, 2nd overall picks aren’t exactly flying under the radar, even if they come from a relatively unknown school such as North Dakota State. The thing is, no one expected Wentz to start, let alone play at a pretty high level only days after Sam Bradford was traded away and he got the starting nod.

The mere fact that he is starting at all, unlike Goff, is great in itself. It shows that the Eagles picked a guy with a high football IQ, great physical attributes, and someone who doesn’t wilt under the pressures of facing NFL defenses as a rookie.

Carson Wentz looks to add onto a brilliant Week 1 start under the Monday Night lights against Chicago.
Image by foxsports.com

Now, add in his quality play and out-playing of former 2nd overall pick Robert Griffin III, and it becomes even more obvious that the Eagles got a steal. Since 1986, only three rookie starters have thrown for at least 275 yards and two touchdowns, and two of the three are the aforementioned Wentz and Griffin III.  The third was the great Jim Kelly of the Buffalo Bills, who debuted in 1986. Wentz’s productivity this early, regardless of how poor of an opponent the Browns were, cannot be overstated.

 

After the Eagles beat Jay Cutler and the Chicago Bears last night, all eyes will be on Wentz to see if he can continue off of his hot start. If he does so, you can guarantee that general managers all around the league will wake up with a serious case of buyer’s remorse.

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About Alex Evans

Alex is currently a sophomore journalism student at William Paterson University. He's an avid New York sports fan, and particularly enjoys covering baseball and football. Follow him in Twitter @AlexEvans1597