The Philadelphia Eagles are still trying to get the best return on a deal for Carson Wentz, even though the offers the franchise has received have been far below their expectation. If the Eagles are going to work out a deal with the Indianapolis Colts, they may have to embrace the reality of not getting a first-round pick back for their former franchise quarterback.
Per Zak Keefer of The Athletic, the Colts haven’t significantly changed their initial offer to the Eagles from a week ago — which was a reported package of around two second-round draft picks with a third-round pick or fourth-found pick as a sweetener. The Eagles and the Colts are still talking a potential Wentz trade, but with a lack of other suitors, Indianapolis has no reason to increase its offer.
The Eagles reportedly want at least a first-round pick for Wentz. The Chicago Bears were the reported front-runner for the quarterback, but those talks appear not to have evolved.
The Colts are a better fit for Wentz, due to having a head coach he trusts in Frank Reich (who was the Eagles offensive coordinator in 2016 and 2017) — and they run a similar style of offense as what Wentz ran when he developed into one of the best young quarterbacks in the NFL over his first two seasons. Indianapolis also has an offensive line that allowed the second-fewest sacks in the league last year (21, tied with the Green Bay Packers) and features a young core of skill position players that includes Jonathan Taylor and Michael Pittman. The Eagles could potentially get the Colts to increase their offer by throwing Zach Ertz and his contract in the deal, a familiar face for Wentz and a starting tight end the franchise needs for their offense.
Philadelphia has a deadline to deal Wentz, who is due a $10 million roster bonus on March 19. That bonus is why the Eagles don’t have as much leverage as they think in trying to get a deal done. Per CBS NFL analyst Joel Corry, the $10 million would be a financial expenditure and cap charge with a trade. Philadelphia’s cap charge or dead money would consist of the $33,820,611 of bonus proration left in Wentz’s contract, hence why the Eagles would want to deal Wentz before that date.
The Eagles may just have to take the best offer available, instead of trying to create a market where few suitors already exist. Perhaps eating the roster bonus will end up being the way to get the best offer for Wentz.