Carson Wentz reflects on 2018: I wasn’t the greatest teammate
For the second time in as many years, backup quarterback Nick Foles came to the rescue for the Philadelphia Eagles in 2018, taking over for an injured Carson Wentz and returning the team to the playoffs.
Foles’ success this time around came with a bit of a caveat, however. He is poised to become an unrestricted free agent pending a potential buy out and the use of the franchise tag, which has caused the debate to rage: Is Foles more valuable to Philadelphia than Wentz?
With that debate swirling, a bombshell report surfaced in late January suggesting Wentz was viewed as “selfish” and “egotistical” by some of his teammates, who each presented their commentary anonymously.
Shortly after that report made the rounds, multiple players came forward bashing the narrative and defending Wentz, with tight end Zach Ertz going as far as to call Wentz a “great leader.”
On Sunday, for the first time since that report surfaced, Wentz addressed the struggles of his 2018 campaign and acknowledged that, at times, he may have come across as a bit selfish.
“I know who I am, first of all,” Wentz told the Philadelphia Inquirer. “I know how I carry myself, I know I’m not perfect, I know I have flaws. So I’m not going to sit here and say it was inaccurate and completely made up, I’m not going to do that. But at the end of the day, I will say our locker room is really close. If there were guys that had issues, in hindsight, I wish we could have just talked about them.
“It’s never fun to read, but to an extent, you look at it and be like, ‘Well, if someone did have this perception of me, why? What have I done wrong? What can I get better at?’ I realize I have my shortcomings. Yes, I can be selfish. I think we all have selfishness inside of us. There’s human elements to that, that I really look at and say, ‘Well, I can get better.’ I always say I can be better on the field, off the field, how I carry myself.”
That selfishness, Wentz says, made 2018 much harder to deal with than 2017. It may have also made him a bad teammate.
“It hasn’t been the easiest last year for me on the physical level, just battling the injuries, but then just personally going through it, sitting on the sideline and then playing and then sitting on the sideline again,” Wentz said. “So I realize I maybe wasn’t the greatest teammate at times because I was emotionally kind of all over the place. To the outside world, I probably didn’t show it much. But internally, you’re definitely fighting some sort of emotions. … So there’s things to learn just about how to handle myself in certain situations.”
While Wentz acknowledges those aspects of the story, he denied others. He said there were no verbal altercations, there was never any “bullying” of offensive coordinator Mike Groh and never once did he object to a play because it was designed for Foles.
Based on public appearances, the Eagles are fully committed to Wentz as their franchise quarterback, and so long as he’s healthy, will be under center to start the 2019 season.