Philadelphia Eagles’ Carson Wentz returns to sideline for Falcons game
Philadelphia Eagles head coach Doug Pederson, left, and Carson Wentz watch warm-ups before an NFL divisional playoff football game against the Atlanta Falcons, Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Michael Perez)
PHILADELPHIA — Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz can’t help his teammates on the field Saturday, but the MVP candidate is with them on the sidelines for the first time since he suffered a season-ending ACL tear Dec. 10.
Wentz watched the final two games of the regular season from a booth as a safety precaution while he was using crutches to move around. But the star signal-caller had just one crutch under his right arm Saturday and remained on the sideline as the game started.
He chatted with his replacement, Nick Foles, after Philly’s first offensive drive.
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Wentz, 25, broke a franchise record with 33 touchdown passes this season and stood as the central figure of the Eagles’ ascent from the basement of the NFC East to the top seed in the conference. Foles, a sixth-year veteran, replaced Wentz in the lineup and turned in mixed results through three starts — he threw four touchdown against the Giants before struggling against the Raiders and Cowboys.
.@cj_wentz out here supporting his squad! #FlyEaglesFly #ATLvsPHI pic.twitter.com/a17omzBg3u
— NFL (@NFL) January 13, 2018
Coach Doug Pederson said this week he wanted to find a balance between keeping Wentz involved with the team and giving Foles room to establish himself as a leader.
“The train is still kind of moving,” Pederson said. “We’re sick to our stomachs that those [injured players] aren’t with us out there on the field, but the train is still moving. And the sooner we get over that and get onto the next order of business, the better we’re going to be become.”