Beers and Birds
We’re approaching a very interesting time in Philadelphia sports, especially for a 4-for-4 fan. Make that 3-for-4, let’s mention the elephant the room. Barring some major development from their minor league system and a bit (and by a bit, I mean a shitload) of luck, the Phillies appear to be stuck in the doldrums for the time being. The Flyers, despite missing the playoffs, were fortunate enough to move up in the lottery from 13th to 2nd in a 2 person draft. Nolan Patrick or Nico Hischier will soon be wearing black and orange, and along with Ghost and Provorov, should lead the Flyers back to the playoffs. In acquiring the 1st pick in the 2017 draft, the Sixers now have an uber talented core with a solid bench, and barring injuries, the future has championship contention upside (thanks Hinkie). Likewise, Howie Roseman’s masterful maneuvering from 13 to 8 (by trading Maxwell and Alonso to the Dolphins) and taking a net of a second and a third (with the Sam Bradford trade making up for the other lost 1st round pick) in acquiring Carson Wentz have set put themselves in position for the most interesting time in Eagles football since the McNabb peak years in ’99-’04.
When talking about the Eagles, the playoff and Super Bowl aspirations the team has can be tied directly to Wentz. We witnessed the ebb and flow of a rookie quarterback last season. Someone who couldn’t be stopped and didn’t throw an interception over the first three weeks is the same player that produced inconsistently throughout the remainder of the season. There’s not any earth shattering information here, his production is to be as expected for a rookie QB in the NFL. Waiting to see what he can become is the frustrating point, as we may not see a finished product for a few years. Carson has more weapons offensively, and the natural inclination is to extrapolate after this season on what the future holds. Let’s reflect on some of the memorable 2nd year’s QB stats, and see how it projected their career.
Dante Culpepper – Season Stats: 11-5 record (1-1 postseason), lost NFC Championship, 297-of-474 (62.7 percent) for 3,937 yards, 33 TD, 16 INT, 98.0 passer rating, 470 rushing yards, seven rushing touchdowns.
Great season, but after losing Randy Moss and sustaining a knee injury, Culpepper was never the same.
Season Score 8/10, how it predicted his career 2/10.
Tom Brady – Season Stats: 11-3 as a starter (3-0 postseason), won Super Bowl XXXVI, 264-of-413 (63.9 percent) for 2,843 yards, 18 TD, 12 INT, 86.5 passer rating.
9/10 season, 10/10 predictor. Hard to argue he’s not the GOAT.
Colin Kaepernick – Season Stats: 5-2 as a starter (2-1 postseason), lost Super Bowl XLVII, 136-of-218 (62.4 percent) for 1,814 yards, 10 TD, 3 INT, 98.3 passer rating,, 415 rushing yards, five rushing touchdowns.
Fantastic season supported by a great defense. Accuracy issues plagued him moving forward.
8.5/10 season, 3/10 for his career.
Ben Roethlisberger – Season Stats: 9-3 record (4-0 postseason), won Super Bowl XL, 168-of-268 (62.7 percent) for 2,385 yards, 17 TD, 9 INT, 98.6 passer rating.
Another great year for a 2nd year QB, and barring Brady, may be the toughest to face in the playoffs.
9/10 season, 10/10 career.
What conclusion can you draw from this? Not very much. Even if Wentz were to have a promising year, it’s still too early to project how good (or bad) his career will be. It could be as good as a Super Bowl winner, or as poor as someone searching for a job in the middle of his playable years. We can hope that the improved weapons along with a full training camp as a starter can lead to a step forward in his career progression, but its impact on Wentz’s career will take a few years to shape itself.