Pederson Quashes QB Controversy
PHILADELPHIA (973espn.com) - What exactly did you expect Doug Pederson to say?
Posed with the question of what would have happened if his MVP candidate Carson Wentz had not gone down with a season-ending knee injury on Dec. 10 in Los Angeles by Rich Eisen on Wednesday, the Eagles coach surmised that things would have ended in the exact same way with Jeffrey Lurie hoisting the franchise's first Lombardi Trophy in Minneapolis.
“I truly believe if he’s healthy, I still feel strongly that we would probably (be) in the Super Bowl and win the Super Bowl with Carson, and he’s the MVP,” Pederson said. “That’s just the way he played last year.”
Turns out Nick Foles took the baton from Wentz and struggled through the remainder of the regular season before catching fire in the playoffs, particularly in the NFC title win over Minnesota and the Super Bowl LII triumph over New England.
What would have changed, however, was the narrative of the underdog theme that the Eagles and their fanbase embraced because Philadelphia would have been significant favorites over both Atlanta and the Vikings had Wentz remained in the lineup.
The bigger news coming out of the interview, though, was Pederson making it abundantly clear what the pecking order is in the Eagles' QB room by labeling Foles the backup moving forward.
"Being a former quarterback to have two guys and really three guys, you throw (Nate Sudfeld) in there, but you’re talking about Nick and Carson who you just don’t bat an eye with either one of these guys,” Pederson explained. “The way they prepare, the way they study, their demeanor on the field, their leadership styles. It’s a blessing to have two veteran guys like that and now have a Super Bowl MVP as your backup.”
-John McMullen covers the Eagles and the NFL for 973espn.com. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @JFMcMullen