The Eagles had just finished their first practice in London, the players had finished their one to one interviews when Carson Wentz took to the stage at the London Irish training ground. He spoke to the media on a number of topics and answered some probing questions after tough losses to Tennessee and again last week to Carolina.
On Jaguars prep
Wentz commented on his mood after last week’s loss to the Panthers “I was very frustrated after last week like you said but that’s the great thing about the NFL, you’re right back up next week. It’s a fast turnaround. Practice has been great all week, the energy’s been great and the guys are hungry to turn things around, and they know that’s not how they finish games. That’s not what we do so everyone was hungry to get back out there.”
“As the quarterback and the leaders in general its on a lot of us to to get everyone going again and realise, record aside, that doesn’t matter. The goal is to go 1-0 each week. Especially in the division we’re in it’s wide open. At this time of year we’re not where we want to be but we still have the whole season in front of us,”
The quarterback was asked about Pederson saying on Monday that at the end of a game like the one against the Panthers, he wants the ball in Wentz’s hands. “I definitely at the end of the game want the ball in my hands as well because I’m confident in my ability and the guys around me. I’m confident in every guy out there. We do it in practice, we’ve done it in games before we just need to finish better. Some of that’s just communication, better communication and some of it’s taking what’s there and not trying to force things. We’ve done a good job of that at times and sometimes all of us kind of get ahead of ourselves. There’s definitely things to learn from last week and grow from,”.
When asked if he hoped the trip was like LA last year, Wentz joked, “I hope not!” because that was the game he tore his ACL. The media laughed and Wentz went on to agree that there was definitely a lot to be gained from the trip in terms of bonding.
The Eagles quarterback was asked about how they are using Nelson Agholor, the fact a lot of his targets had been on short routes (6 of 7 were at or behind the line of scrimmage!). He replied, “Some of that its situational. A lot of those behind the line of scrimmage things are … a reaction based off a blitz the defence is giving us. We kind of have [some run] options built in.
He continued to add “We still love Nelly down the field, and we know he’s a vertical threat from the slot, we can move him outside, and he’s the guy we use on jet sweeps and different things,”. Using Agholor down the field should feature heavily in the game plan as the Jaguars will be without three corners!
Zach Ertz has been targeted a massive 76 times. I feel sure that’s in part because he and Agholor were the only healthy pass catching starters. Regardless of the reason for increased targets, the relationship between the two is a definite plus. Wentz stated that his favourite attributes of Ertz was “How smart he is. He’s sometime asking for the [coverage] check before I even make the check and we’re in each other’s minds with that stuff. Just knowing where he’s going to be, his body language and how he plays; that’s big for us.”
Jalen Mills and the Jaguars D
Early in the season Jaguars corner Jalen Ramsey was critical of several quarterbacks but praised Wentz. The Eagles quarterback also said he was “Assuming he’ll [Jalen] follow Alshon Jeffery but Jeffery has been playing good football too, so we’re not going to necessarily shy away from him. We’re going to give him the respect that he deserves, but when the play’s there to be made I trust that Alshon’s going to make it!”
Wentz finished the session talking about how the Jaguars defence was solid up front with good linebackers but that if they played their game and stayed patient the plays would be there.