By Brian Matthews
Eagles coach Doug Pederson drew a line in the sand this morning about benching Carson Wentz:
“No. You don’t go there. That’s a knee-jerk reaction,” Pederson told 94.1WIP when asked what it would take to look at options at QB outside Wentz. “Carson’s our quarterback. We’re going to get it fixed. He is going to get it fixed.”
The Eagles tied the Cincinnati Bengals 23-23 and are 0-2-1, the first Eagles team to be winless through three games since 1999, when Pederson was the team’s quarterback for over half the season.
Wentz helped force overtime with a diving touchdown late in regulation but had a shaky day overall, going 29-of-47 for 225 yards with a touchdown and two interceptions. He is tied for the most interceptions in the NFL with six through three games, is 29th in completion percentage (59.8) and is last in QB rating (63.9).
The rough start has some fans calling for second-round pick Jalen Hurts to take over. Hurts has been sprinkled into the offense over the past two weeks. He played three snaps and handled the ball twice, resulting in a first-down run and a fumble that Philly recovered.
Pederson suggested benching Wentz would be giving in to the “aura” in the city right now as opposed to acting on the team’s beliefs.
For his part, Pederson expressed regret for deciding to punt late in overtime on a fourth-and-12 in Cincinnati territory, assuring a tie, rather than giving his offense a chance to go and win it.
“Looking back, you probably put it in your quarterback’s hands to win the game,” he said.
Despite the poor start, the Eagles remain just a half-game out of first place in the bumbling NFC East — something Pederson mentioned as part of his response to the question about benching Wentz.
“We have a long season. … The whole division right now is not playing very good football,” he said. “We’re not that far off.”