With Wentz Back the Eagles’ ‘Galaxy is in Balance’
PHILADELPHIA (973espn.com) - A Wednesday press conference with QB1 in Philadelphia.
It was almost as if the past nine months never occurred as Carson Wentz finally settled back into the routine of being the face of the franchise.
"It's been a long time coming," the Eagles' star signal caller said as he settled in behind the microphone.
Wentz was always going to return as the starting QB of course even after Nick Foles' miraculous run toward a Super Bowl MVP. Call it the difference between lightning (Foles' magic against Minnesota and New England) vs. the storm (Wentz's stature as a top-five QB in the NFL).
Wentz wanted to be back for the season opener against Atlanta but the Eagles medical team played the caution card intent on waiting until the nine-month mark had passed in Wentz's rehabilitation.
"Obviously I wanted to [play against the Falcons]," Wentz admitted. "Physically I felt good. I feel about the same where I'm at [now] but at the end of the day it comes down to the research, what the doctors are saying and this [timetable] was the best for this situation."
Both Wentz and Doug Pederson admitted there is going to be some excitement on Sunday when the Indianapolis Colts visit and perhaps that will need to be tempered with Wentz comparing the game to his first NFL start against Cleveland in 2016.
"I know that place is going to be rocking on Sunday," Wentz said.
As the game progresses, however, Wentz believes any added adrenaline will slowly dissipate. At that point, it will become "just football."
"Listen, it's a home game, his first start," Pederson said. "there's going to be emotions regardless. I can talk to him until Sunday kickoff and there is always going to be that high emotion, everybody's attention of taking the field."
Wentz, however, has set high expectations against his former offensive coordinator Frank Reich and the Colts.
"At the end of the day. I and really this whole offense and whole organization always has high expectations," Wentz said. "We expect to go and start fast, play fast and be clicking and I truly believe that is a realistic expectation. Now, that's just football, it's not always like that. Those things come and you have to balance those ebbs and flows of the game and everything. I think we all hold ourselves to high expectations around here."
Wentz will be forced to play with a brace on his knee and essentially confirmed it will be there all year, claiming it will be revisited in the offseason. For now, it's doctor's orders because even though he's cleared from ACL and LCL surgery, it generally takes 12 to 15 months before someone will be back to their pre-surgery condition.
However, Wentz doesn't expect mobility, a key part of his skill set that helps the Eagles with off-schedule offense, to be an issue.
"I feel extremely confident moving around, on the run," Wentz said. "Even last year I never said I’m a running quarterback, I never want to be, but I’ll find ways to extend time in the pocket and make plays down the field, and I don’t think that’s going anywhere.”
As for what will be deemed a success against the Colts, the answer was simple:
"Obviously, we want to go out there and win," Wentz explained.
And winning figures to be easier now with Wentz at the controls.
"The galaxy is in balance now," Pederson joked. "You guys can relax."
-John McMullen covers the Eagles and the NFL for 973espn.com. You can reach him at email@example.com or on Twitter @JFMcMullen