FanPost

Trying to have faith in Wentz?


I believe there are 3 main components to a consistent championship level NFL team.

1. An elite coach or an elite coaching staff. e.g. McVay, Reid, Belichick

2.. An owner who can attract and retain said coach or staff. E.g. Robert Kraft, Kroenke, the Chiefs' Hunt family.

3. An elite QB or a QB who plays elite down the stretch when it counts.

Now, the Commanders will NEVER have No. 2 as long as little Danny boy owns the team. Donald Sterling is the epitome of bad owners. Now, Snyder is the worst owner in team sports followed closely by the Knicks' Nolan. So we are stuck with this impending doom.

Rivera is not an elite coach but he is not a bad one either. He probably is the best veteran coach our horrible owner can attract. Dallas has the same problem with Jerry Jones. Jerry is a great business NFL owner but horrible in attracting great coaches after dumping Jimmy Johnson way back in the 1990s.

There have been outlier championship coaches who were good but not great recently. Bruce Arians was pretty good but not great kind of on the level of Rivera but had the GOAT Brady. Denver won with John Fox with an elite defense and elite game manager in Peyton Manning.

The most recent NFL championship coaches have been close to Hall of Fame level in McVay, Belichick, Reid, Pete Carroll, even John Harbaugh.

So that brings the QB. There is some confusion you NEED a HOF level QB to win a title. Not true. True, most of the winning NFL title QBs since 2010 have been either HOF or close to it in the GOAT Brady, Mahomes, Aaron Rodgers, Russell Wilson, even Matthew Stafford. So this obviously does not hurt.

But you can also win a title with a QB who is 1. an elite game manager 2. and clutch.

The GOAT Brady is the GOAT because he is an elite game manager, clutch, and he has above level arm talent. Russell Wilson is a little like this.

I purposely did not mention Peyton Manning winning with Denver in 2016. He obviously was a great NFL QB prior to winning the title in 2016. In the 2 seasons prior to winning the title, he had 55 TDs and 39 TDs. In his title season, Manning has 9 TDs and 17 INTs. But he had a great defense and was always an elite game manager who was fairly clutch.

Nick Foles is the poster child and maybe the outlier. In his short stint, Foles became an elite game manager who was clutch. Joe Flacco was not an elite game manager but pretty clutch in his title season. So you do not need to have a HOF level QB..

Wentz is hard to comp.

Basically, the Commanders are hoping he magically turns his career around age 30.

It seems like they want him to be someone like Rich Gannon. Gannon was an OK QB in his 20s (even in a stint with the Redskins). But he magically took off with the Raiders in his 30s. However, he fell short of winning a title.

Maybe they are hoping Wentz is like Doug Williams. Williams was a pretty good QB on some horrible teams in his 20s. Jay Schroeder was more like Wentz with a cannon arm but not great accuracy. Williams in a short stretch was lights out using all his game managing wisdom losing so much.

This offseason, my top QB targets to reasonably acquire were: 1. Matt Ryan 2. Jimmy G (if the shoulder was healthy).

Ryan has been massively underused playing for the bum franchise Falcons. Ryan is an elite game manager, above level arm talent, pretty good athlete, and has been considered clutch (Matty Ice). I am not sure why more teams were not clamoring to acquire Ryan? Maybe it his age (37). We will see if the Colts made the right move.

Alex Smith probably was one of the best game managers of all time. The problem is he did not have elite arm talent and would not be considered extremely clutch. It is kind of a shame Washington never had a full season of Smith.

Jimmy G is a little like this. There is a reason his team almost always wins when other QBs on the same team could not. Jimmy G is a pretty good athlete, has probably a better arm than Smith, and has some clutch moments. But the bonehead INT is always there with Jimmy G. The N.Y. Giants should easily be the worst team in this division. But if they somehow acquire Jimmy G, they instantly become playoff contenders.

I wonder how hard or even if the Commanders tried to get Ryan. And once he was traded to Indy, they turned their attention to Wentz.

Wentz (even if you throw out the great year in 2017) has been a pretty good regular season QB. His arm talent may be top 5 or 10 in the league. His athletic ability also may be close to top 10 level. Dak Prescott is probably easily the best overall QB in the NFC LEast. But based on talent and even resume, Wentz is a close second.

But Wentz is NEITHER an elite game manager or has shown to be clutch.

Taylor Heinicke has already shown to be extremely clutch and a decent game manager. But his lack of elite arm talent only works in spurts kind of like Nick Foles.

In fact, I believe Heinicke may be the most clutch QB in the division along with Dak. I also think Philly's Gardiner Minshew can be clutch. That is why I rank Heinicke and Minshew the top backup QBs in the league along with Baltimore's Tyler Huntley. Those 3 have tremendous value with the longer season and exposure to injuries (or Covid).

Also, the elephant in the room is the injury history to Wentz. This analysis states Wentz has a 77 percent chance to get injured during the season. On the flip side, Dak (even though he had a serious injury 2 seasons ago) has an 11 percent chance to get hurt. How is this injury history to Wentz going to change?

Best ability is availability. And the odds are seriously showing Wentz is going to get hurt maybe seriously. He has kind of a reckless style. Now, elite QBs like Mahomes have kind of a reckless style but do not seem to get hurt.

That is why I love having Heinicke on this team.

My prediction is Wentz probably will get hurt somewhere around the 10th or 11th game. The fantasy hope is Heinicke comes off the bench to lead this team to a title like Nick Foles or Doug Williams down the stretch. But to do this, this Washington defense must be elite.

My main predictions for Wentz are this:

1. He will put up good numbers especially on the deep throw.

2. He will struggle as usual with the underneath throws.

3. Probably will get hurt in the 10th or 11th game.

I hope I am wrong. Wentz has the ability to be a franchise QB to lead this team the next 3-4 seasons.

But based on history, this is a hope and a prayer.