There’s no shortage of intriguing matchups for Carson Wentz in his first season as Washington Commanders quarterback.
The tent matchup will, of course, be a much-anticipated return to Philadelphia when the Commanders play host Eagles on Monday night football on Nov. 14.
In his first year in the Monday night booth next to Joe Buck, his regular broadcast partner, Hall of Fame quarterback Troy Aikman will name that game. He believes it will be part of a last-chance season for Wentz, who was selected second overall by the Eagles in the 2016 NFL Draft, but is now slated to play for his third team in as many seasons.
“I think Carson had a chance at this point; obviously it didn’t end well in Philadelphia,” Aikman said Monday via ESPN transcript. “He was then traded to Indianapolis. It didn’t go great for him there. They decided to make another change at that position, and now he’s landed in Washington.
“This is probably his last chance, to be blunt about it, to prove he can be a franchise quarterback in the NFL.”
Aikman began his HOF NFL career with the Dallas Cowboys with a 1-15 season, but that proved to be the start of a franchise renaissance that saw him quarterback the club to three Super Bowl titles. Thus, Aikman knows what it takes to overcome adversity on the playing field and achieve the greatest glory.
For Wentz, his days in Philadelphia started well enough. Showing promise as a rookie, he was sensational during a 2017 season that saw him make the Pro Bowl after running for AP NFL Most Valuable Player before losing to injury during the Eagles’ Super Bowl run. However, Wentz’s game collapsed in 2020 and he was shipped west to Indianapolis. His game did not improve with the Colts and he was traded for a second straight offseason, this time back to the NFC East with Washington, where he will see Philadelphia twice this coming season, including the highly anticipated return to Lincoln Financial Field.
That November 14 showdown will actually be the final stop in a Wentz reunion tour that will begin on Week 1, when he takes on his longtime Eagles head coach Doug Pederson and the visiting Jacksonville Jaguars, who will see Wentz’s 2021 season and his stay in Indy. ended with a shocking win over the Colts in the teams’ regular season finale. Then, Wentz first plays against the Eagles at FedExField on September 25, before returning to Indianapolis against the Colts on October 30.
Storylines and subplots abound, but for Aikman, the real drama will be one last chance for Wentz to show he has what it takes to be a franchise quarterback when he takes the field for his third team.
“I’m hopeful he can take advantage of that [chance]Aikman said. “Looking forward to that match-up between those two teams [in Philadelphia]† But this is kind of a defining season, I think, for Carson Wentz and what his future is going to look like.”