According to The MMQB’s Albert Breer on ‘The Herd with Colin Cowherd’, while the Chicago Bears have ‘pushed harder’ for former Philadelphia Eagles franchise quarterback Carson Wentz, the Indianapolis Colts remain his preferred trade destination—complicating ongoing negotiations:
“I think Chicago is the frontrunner this morning, and I do know that there is a feeling inside that building that (from) Ryan Pace, from the coaching staff, Matt Nagy, John DeFilippo, their pass game coordinator, who got two of the best years out of Carson Wentz in 2016 and 2017 as his quarterbacks coach, they believe that mechanically they can fix him,” Breer said during Monday’s show.
“Now, one of the big issues with Carson Wentz is that he hasn’t always responded well to hard coaching, so that’s something they’d have to get past because John DeFilippo was the bad cop in Philadelphia.”
“I think the issue right now Colin is where Carson Wentz wants to go. I think it’s become pretty clear he’d rather go to Indianapolis, and I think part of it now for the Eagles is going to be, ‘Okay, if our best return right now is Chicago over Indy, then we need to convince to Carson Wentz that, this is the only place you’re going, bud. And you need to buck up and accept this and realize the Bears are going to give you a good chance.’”
“And I can understand why Carson Wentz would be skeptical because look, Indianapolis, they are stable. Chris Ballard. Frank Reich. They’re going nowhere. In Chicago, you’d be going to play for guys whose jobs are going to be on the line in 2021.”
“But I think it’s pretty clear at this point, that the Bears have pushed harder than the Colts to get Carson Wentz, and the Eagles are probably going to get their best return with Carson Wentz going to Chicago. I think the last piece of it would become, ‘Can you convince Carson Wentz that it’s the right thing to do?’ because I think the Bears would at least like to know that Carson Wentz is on board before pulling the trigger on a trade.”
This sounds relatively on point from a number of recent reports too.
PFT and NBC Sports’ Chris Simms reported last week that Indianapolis was Wentz’ preferred trade destination. We also heard from NFL Analyst Ron Jaworski that the Colts had offered two second round picks and maybe a mid-round pick, but that Philadelphia general manager Howie Roseman has been holding out hope for more—presumably at least a first round pick.
There was an ensuing report that another NFL team had offered more than the Colts—with that unnamed mystery team more than likely being the Bears right now.
The ‘Carson Wentz to the Colts’ trade saga continues to carry on with no real end in sight.
That is, until the 3rd day of the new league year (which begins March 17), when Wentz is due a $10 million roster bonus—which by all indications, the Eagles simply won’t pay.
However, until that deadline, this ‘cat-and-mouse’ game between the Eagles and Colts may continue, where each side hopes that the other ultimately blinks.
That being said, Colts general manager Chris Ballard is notoriously prudent with his draft picks and has already said that his franchise ‘won’t act out of desperation’ for a starting quarterback this offseason.
This recent Breer report indicates that the Eagles can get more from the Bears than the Colts for Wentz, but if the high profile quarterback doesn’t actually want to play in ‘The Windy City’ then that creates a problem for Philadelphia—because Chicago general manager Ryan Pace won’t want to surrender high draft compensation for a player who doesn’t want to actually be there to lead his team—with his job already on the line in 2021:
"I know fans don't like to hear this, but Carson does have leverage. If he doesn't want to play there, why would Chicago give a lot up? That is likely why the trade has not gone through." - @Jeff_McLane on the reports that the Bears need to know Carson wants to play in Chicago— 975TheFanatic (@975TheFanatic) February 16, 2021
It could ultimately force the Eagles to take the Colts’ lesser offer because of a loss of Philly’s leverage—if the Bears are forced to drop out because of Wentz’ unwillingness to play there.