How Carson Wentz’s injury affects Philadelphia Eagles, NFL, Super Bowl odds and more
AP Photo/Kelvin Kuo
LOS ANGELES — The Philadelphia Eagles’ season and the career trajectory of the franchise’s most promising player took a sharp turn Sunday when quarterback Carson Wentz hobbled through a tunnel at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum and into the visiting locker room.
Coach Doug Pederson announced Monday an MRI revealed Wentz has a season-ending torn ACL, which will likely keep the MVP candidate sidelined until next summer, if not longer.
Wentz suffered the left knee injury on a scramble in the third quarter of Sunday’s win over the Rams, when he dove across the goal line to score a touchdown that came off the board because of a holding penalty. He stayed in the game and threw for a score four snaps later before limping to the sideline to undergo a medical evaluation.
The loss of a player of Wentz’s caliber will reverberate across the NFL. He was an emerging star in the league, the face of the team with the NFC’s best record and the primary source of enthusiasm for one of the country’s most vaunted fan bases.
Here’s how Wentz’s injury affects a wide range of things, from his own future to the team’s prospects of contending in 2017.
It’s obvious Wentz’s absence alters the outlook of the Eagles’ promising campaign. At 11-2, the Birds have clinched the NFC East title and their first playoff berth since 2013, but Wentz has been a productive player and the central figure of their ascent to the top of the heap in the conference.
He leads the NFL with 33 touchdown passes, and beyond that, his presence energized the team.
Backup Nick Foles made a Pro Bowl as the Eagles’ starter in 2013, before his career sputtered in St. Louis. He has a tall task ahead of him in replacing Wentz, a quarterback who’s infused a championship-starved team and fan base with the type of hope they’ve lacked for a decade.
There are silver linings: The Eagles have an inside track to the No. 1 seed in the NFC playoffs, a productive running game and one of the league’s top defenses. It seems unlikely that those positives are enough to make up for the loss of their leader, though.
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