Pederson explains how Wentz can be a better teammate

Eliot Shorr-Parks
March 26, 2019 - 1:07 pm

ARIZONA — Plenty of talk this offseason surrounding quarterback Carson Wentz has revolved around his relationship with other players in the locker room and how his teammates view him. The beginning of the conversation started with the release of a Philly Voice article earlier this offseason that painted the picture of Wentz having a complicated relationship with his teammates, and was followed up by Wentz admitting he could be a better teammate. 

Speaking Tuesday the NFL Annual Meetings in Arizona, Eagles head coach Doug Pederson offered up a very revealing and honest answer about how he believes Wentz can be a better teamed in 2019. 

“First of all, I think everyone can be a better teammate. I can be a better coach to the team. I think being a better teammate would just be being a little more vulnerable. A little more accessible. You are obviously committed to your craft and your skill. You want to walk across the isle and talk to the other side,” Pederson said. “That is all part of the maturation process and a growth process. It is something that you learn through time. I watched it with some of the greatest quarterbacks I ever played with. I saw it with Dan Marino, I saw it with Brett Favre. Guys that, for them to become better teammates, they embraced the entire team and take on that personality. Then people follow. Carson has that in him, he has that in his DNA, and that is what we are excited about.”

The last year has, by any measure, been a tough one for Wentz. He went from being a potential NFL MVP in 2017 to watching backup quarterback Nick Foles come in, win the Super Bowl and then carry the team to the playoffs again in 2018. Wentz has been forced to watch the whole thing from the sideline with back-to-back season ending injuries. 

When asked if the issues with Wentz not being as accessible to his teammates as he could be were related to the injuries or just something his quarterback has struggled with since he arrived in 2016 as a rookie, Pederson had this to say. 

“We’ve seen it kind of both scenarios. It is harder when you are not with your guys like he was a year ago because he was rehabbing. He is not out there. It is hard,” Pederson said. “The more now he interjects himself with the team…that is what you see. It is difficult. You want to be out there with your guys. You want to be competing with your guys, and when you are not, it’s hard.”

The encouraging news for Pederson is that he believes Wentz is already showing signs of maturing as he enters his fourth season. 

“I am. He his coming into his fourth season. He and I are tight…Part of my job is to help all the players on the team become better teammates. That is part of my job. I am looking forward to working with him again this season.”