Eagles Wake-Up Call: Wentz To Deal With Bradford ‘Professionally’
The first day of the draft came and went, and Sam Bradford remains on the Eagles roster. What’s more, the team that reportedly inquired about him — the Broncos — moved up and selected Memphis quarterback Paxton Lynch with the 26th overall pick, thereby closing the door on a potential landing spot more than likely.
Not that Howie Roseman planned on dealing his projected 2016 starter in the first place.
“No,” said Roseman, when asked if he would honor Bradford’s request to be traded. “Sam’s our quarterback. We’ve been clear about that from the first time we had this conversation. Whenever he comes back we’ll welcome him with open arms. This is the voluntary period of the offseason so players have the right to do what they want.”
Doug Pederson tried to put a positive spin on it, saying that it would give the other quarterbacks an opportunity to get more reps in the interim, but obviously this is far from ideal. For one, the new head coach is in the process of installing a brand new offense, and the chosen leader of said offense is no longer showing up for work. Bradford has not been in contact with either Roseman or Pederson since issuing a trade demand, they said.
So there are the potential effects this all could have on 2016, and then there’s the issue of how it could impact the hopeful quarterback of the future in Carson Wentz.
Will it be tough for him to deal with that kind of dynamic as he transitions into the pros?
“No, I don’t think so,” said Wentz, fresh off being drafted No. 2 overall by the Eagles Thursday night. “I’ve been an Eagle now for about an hour, so we’ll kind of see how that transpires. It’s out of my control. I’m not going to worry about it, and it will all work out.”
How will he handle his first time meeting with Bradford?
“Professionally,” he replied. “We’re both professionals now, and it will be what it is. I won’t make it bigger than it needs to be. I’m just going to go in there and focus on what I can control, and learning as much ball as I can as quickly as I can.”
This will be a tricky situation for the Eagles’ front office to navigate. They are going to want a healthy quarterback room for Wentz to develop in, and it’s fair to wonder based off recent events just how harmonious it will be with both Wentz and Bradford in it.
The Eagles clearly weren’t expecting Bradford to react in quite this fashion. While agent Tom Condon said they did not clue Bradford into their draft plans, Pederson claims that they were very up front with him during the process.
“Not at all,” said Pederson, when asked if there should have been more communication in hindsight. “I’ll tell you this: I was very open and honest, as was Howie, during this process. We let all our quarterbacks know that there was an opportunity there and we were going to take advantage of it, and we did that.”
“Whenever you’re drafting guys in the first round, there are players that are affected,” added Roseman. “This happens all around the National Football League. No matter what position we would have taken, some veteran player would have been affected.”
Though this situation is unique, with the team making a big push up the board for a QB after recently signing a veteran to a pretty handsome contract. Bradford reacted poorly to it and now there is a conflict to resolve, which has to be frustrating for a group eager to celebrate and support their prized acquisition.
“I think first of all this is about Carson today. We just picked the kid second overall,” said Roseman, trying to end the line of questioning. “That’s kind of where our focus is, about the fact that we got Carson Wentz.”
WHAT YOU MISSED
“A little bit of Brett Favre, honestly.” Pederson sees some of the Gunslinger in Wentz.
More on the Eagles’ selection of Wentz.
“Sometimes he would have to beg people to come out.” Wentz’s #1 receiver in high school explains the QB’s competitiveness.
“Taxi? Don’t take a taxi. My cousin will give you a ride.” Josh’s introduction to Wentz’s hometown.
WHAT THEY’RE SAYING
Let the honeymoon begin, writes Bob Brookover.
This love story started in January at the Senior Bowl in Mobile, Ala., when the 6-foot-6, 231-pound quarterback impressed the Eagles and plenty of other NFL scouts against a higher level of competition than he saw during his college career. For the Eagles, it continued at the scouting combine in Indianapolis and then during a dinner out in Fargo, N.D.
It was not just Wentz the football player that was winning them over, either.
“From the first time we met him at the Senior Bowl he was an incredibly impressive guy,” Roseman said. “His presence when he walks in the room, when he talks to you not only about football but about life. And then when you watch him interact with people. He walks in the restaurant and the impression people have.”
Roseman told a story about how he stepped out of the restaurant for a second and then overheard a conversation between the restaurant manager and hostess.
“Carson is the greatest guy,” one said to the other. “He’s always so humble, and he’s always so appreciative of all of us here.”
“That’s the kind of kid he is,” Roseman said. “Just excited for our fans and our team to see why we brought him here.”
Conflicting emotions for proud Ohio State alum Malcolm Jenkins Thursday.
— Malcolm Jenkins (@MalcolmJenkins) April 29, 2016
Another buckeye in the NFC East. I love @EliApple13 like a little bro but I gotta turn it off for two weeks lol congrats young man
— Malcolm Jenkins (@MalcolmJenkins) April 29, 2016
Josh will have more from Bismarck, and we’ll look ahead to Day 2 of the draft. Wentz will be in town for a 5:30 press conference.