Carson Wentz won the second straight start of his professional career over the Bears tonight, 29-14. The Bears are no great foe (Pro Football Focus had their secondary as the second-worst in football), but Wentz led his offense this evening with rare composure for a neophyte. He threw for 190 yards, and went 21-for-34 with a touchdown. Those stats are fine for a rookie, but he played much better than his numbers indicate.
In the second quarter, Wentz pulled up after play action with a Bears linebacker running straight at him. He hung in long enough to find Brent Celek for a 19-yard gain, but the play was pulled back after a penalty.
At the end of the second quarter, Wentz lofted a perfectly weighted pass to a charging Jordan Matthews 40 or so yards away. Matthews promptly put it on the turf, and the Eagles had to settle for a field goal.
Early in the third quarter, Wentz hit Nelson Agholor in the hands with a deep ball, but he couldn’t come down with it.
There are always near misses and what-ifs in football because it’s a chaotic jumble of a game with thin margins between success and failure, so it’s not as if Wentz’s bad luck was a significant aberrance. But most of his would-be highlights were ruined by other people rather than any fault of his own. Wentz is still rough around some particular edges (primarily on the run, where he displayed a remarkable dearth of self-preservation instincts), but through a small sample of NFL games, he appears to be legit. Turns out you can scout quarterbacks based on how well they throw a piece of paper into the trash.