Any injury, any single one, is a shame. Injuries are the worst part about football.
Carson Wentz, Philadelphia Eagles quarterback, suffered a season-ending one during the team’s division-clinching win in Los Angeles last week. He was playing like this season’s MVP.
As Cowboys fans we know the wrath of Wentz well. He and his Eagles comrades handed the Cowboys the worst loss they’ve ever seen at AT&T Stadium not even a month ago. It’s a loss for the sport of football that he’s gone until 2018.
Sticking to the present day though, the Cowboys could wind up benefiting greatly from Wentz’s injury.
Nick Foles is now QB1 for the NFC East Champions and history repeats as this same situation happened four years ago. Foles isn’t Carson Wentz, but he is a quality backup quarterback.
The Eagles backup quarterback is, at the moment, an important detail when it comes to the Cowboys. If they win out between now and their Week 17 date in Philadelphia, and if they get the appropriate help, Dallas could be counting on that win for a playoff ticket.
Had Wentz not gotten hurt it would have been quality backup quarterback Nick Foles who would have likely played a majority of the game that day against the Cowboys. This is a situation we’re familiar with as last year in Week 17 at Philadelphia the Cowboys backups played as they had already clinched what Philadelphia likely will this season, home-field advantage and a first-round bye on top of the division.
Mark Sanchez, coincidentally another former Eagles backup QB, played a majority of that game. He was the third quarterback on the Cowboys as Tony Romo was the primary backup.
It will in all likelihood be Philly’s third quarterback in Nate Sudfeld that plays a majority of the game that day, assuming the Eagles lock up what they need to (they play the Giants on Sunday). With no Wentz and Foles’ value of critical importance, they’ll trot out the most expendable player, Sudfeld himself.
Is there a more favorable situation to have land in your lap if you’re in a must-win situation? Nate Sudfeld and a bunch of backups because the team is resting?
Let’s be clear that it is extremely unfortunate that Carson Wentz will miss the remainder of the season. I maintain that he should be the league MVP. What is also clear though is that the domino effect from this plays to the advantage of the Cowboys.
Of course, there is a long list of things that have to happen between now and Week 17 in order for that game to have the significance we just described. If it all does though, Jason Garrett’s Cowboys could enter a win-and-in Week 17 game for the fourth time, against the lowest quality quarterback and team they’ve ever seen in that scenario.