PHILADELPHIA — Eagles coach Doug Pederson was in no mood to discuss the health of quarterback Carson Wentz.
Speaking to the media Sunday, he was uncharacteristically terse in his responses and let his frustration show after a follow-up question related to the process of evaluating Wentz, who has yet to be cleared medically for contact.
“I don’t know how many times I can answer this question,” he said after a long pause and a laugh. “When they clear him, he’ll be cleared. I’m not going to put myself in a box, I’m not going to put my quarterback in a box. I’m not going to do that. And I’m not going to go on a limb and I’m not going to say that. So either ask it a different way or otherwise you’re going to get the same answer.”
Wentz resumed 11-on-11 work in practice last Sunday and has been splitting first-team work with Nick Foles. Wentz has said multiple times of late that it is “going to be close” as to whether he’ll get the green light to play against the Atlanta Falcons.
He is running out of time. The regular-season opener is on Thursday, Sept. 6. Once the Eagles get past this Thursday’s preseason finale against the New York Jets, game-planning for Atlanta will ramp up considerably. They’ll want to know definitely who their quarterback will be.
Eagles coach Doug Pederson is tired of answering the same questions about quarterback Carson Wentz’s health. AP Photo/Matt Slocum
Wentz has shown increased mobility of late, his throwing velocity is actually up from this time last year, and there have been no signs of a setback in his recovery from a torn ACL and LCL in his left knee throughout training camp. It’s a matter now of him hitting the benchmarks that the medical staff has laid out.
There have been plenty of questions surrounding that process over the spring and summer, and Pederson apparently has had enough of them.
“I mean, he’s getting evaluated every day, if that’s what you want,” he said. “He’s part of the rehab process. He’s getting evaluated at practice, he’s getting evaluated by the medical team, he’s getting treatment just like Jason Peters is, just like Darren Sproles is — you guys don’t ask me about those guys — Jordan Hicks, Chris Maragos. Those guys are in the same boat and they are getting evaluated every day.”
Foles will get the start against the Falcons if Wentz can’t go. The Super Bowl MVP has struggled this preseason, including a three-turnover performance against the Cleveland Browns last week.
The first-team offense, which has been missing several key players, did not score a point in exhibition play. Although visibly frustrated last Thursday by the play of his offense, Pederson did not offer a harrowing assessment when asked about the Browns game Sunday.
“It actually wasn’t bad at all. The worst thing about it, obviously, was the turnovers and the missed opportunities,” he said, “but we had some really good things in the game.”