Eagles agree to trade Wentz to Colts for 2 draft picks

Thursday, February 18, 2021
Eagles agree to trade Wentz to Colts for 2 draft picks
We finally have closure! The Eagles have agreed to trade Carson Wentz to the Colts.

PHILADELPHIA -- The Philadelphia Eagles have agreed to trade Carson Wentz to the Indianapolis Colts, sources confirm to 6abc.

In return, the Eagles get a 2021 third-round pick and a conditional 2022 second-round pick that could turn into a first, sources told Action News' Jamie Apody and Jeff Skversky.

The Eagles will receive the 85th overall pick in this year's draft, and the conditional second-rounder can become a first-round pick based on Wentz's playing time, according to sources. Wentz needs to play at least 75% of the Colts' offensive snaps for the 2022 conditional pick to convey to a first-rounder, according to sources.

The pick also could become a first-rounder if Wentz plays at least 70% of the snaps and the Colts reach the playoffs. But the worst the 2022 pick can be is a second-rounder, meaning the Eagles are assured of netting two value picks for the former No. 2 overall selection in the 2016 draft.

ESPN's Adam Schefter and Chris Mortensen were the first to report the trade.

Some Colts players have already gone to social media to welcome their newest teammate.

"Congrats to my new teammate (Carson Wentz) can't wait to get to work!" Colts wide receiver Michael Pittman Jr. tweeted. Pittman, like Wentz, wears No. 11.

Linebacker Darius Leonard tweeted, "Let's get to work!!! Welcome to Indy! Can't wait to see what the future holds in the 317."

The Eagles and Colts spent much of the past two weeks trying to finalize the trade, which cannot be officially processed until the new NFL year begins March 17.

The Eagles will take a $33.8 million dead-cap hit -- the largest dead-cap hit that any team ever has taken for a player -- while the Colts will assume the balance of Wentz's $128 million extension, including the $10 million guaranteed roster bonus due March 19.

Each team walks away from the deal with what it wanted across all fronts: Wentz will be reunited with Colts head coach Frank Reich, his former offensive coordinator in Philadelphia, and help fill the void left by Philip Rivers' retirement while the Eagles are likely to turn to Jalen Hurts, though they also intend to bring in competition for him. The Eagles' starting job is not expected to automatically go to Hurts.

Wentz's departure comes after the team's disastrous 4-11 season and the firing of coach Doug Pederson.

The Eagles' $128 million quarterback finished 34th in completion percentage (57.4) and ranked first in interceptions (15) and sacks (50) last season despite being benched for the final four games in favor of rookie second-round pick Hurts.

It was that move to start Hurts that spawned a quarterback controversy and ultimately fueled trade rumors in the weeks that followed. While Wentz has never commented publicly about the controversy, ESPN sources learned that the relationship between he and Pederson was apparently fractured beyond repair. Pederson has always maintained that their relationship was fine.

And it's those reports that many believe ultimately led Pederson to the exit door on Jan. 11. Pederson led the team to the Super Bowl in 2018, securing the franchise's only win.

SEE ALSO: Eagles change course, fire head coach Doug Pederson after five seasons

Owner Jeffrey Lurie said the decision to move on from Pederson was not specific to Wentz or one position group, focusing instead on the regression of the offense overall in a season during which the NFL set a record for points scored.

The team announced on Jan. 24 that Nick Sirianni, 39, the offensive coordinator for the Indianapolis Colts, would take over for Pederson.

But even Sirianni would not commit to a starting quarterback.

"Naming a starter hasn't even crossed my mind," Sirianni said during his first press conference.

SEE ALSO: New coach Nick Sirianni talks Eagles fans, quarterback controversy

New head coach Nick Sirianni spoke directly to Eagles fans Friday afternoon before answering questions about the quarterback controversy.

There have been whispers over the years that Wentz, 28, has struggled at times with his ability to forge relationships across the locker room, but others believe that could have been a natural byproduct of him and the team not living up to the lofty expectations that followed the 2017 season.

By many public accounts, Wentz has handled himself with class throughout his time in Philadelphia and has received public support from many of the team's leaders over the years, including most recently Fletcher Cox and Jason Kelce.

Wentz was drafted No. 2 overall by the Eagles in 2016 out of North Dakota State. His short NFL career has been marred by injuries. After playing in all 16 games as a rookie, he has missed eight games over the past two seasons, including five last year. In December 2017, Wentz tore his ACL and missed the team's final three games of the regular season and entire postseason run to a Super Bowl title.

Before his injury in 2017, Wentz was having an MVP-caliber season. He led the team to an 11-2 record and finished the year with 3,296 passing yards, a single-season team record 33 touchdowns and just seven interceptions. He was named a Pro Bowler and second-team All-Pro and finished third in MVP voting behind Tom Brady and Todd Gurley II.

The ACL injury also forced Wentz to miss the first two games of 2018. Wentz returned in Week 3 that year to put up a 5-6 record in 11 games before suffering a stress fracture in his back that forced him to miss the final three games of the season.

In June of 2019, Wentz signed a $128 million extension, becoming the team's franchise quarterback.

-ESPN contributed to this report.