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Eagles can't feel pressured into paying Wentz

Eliot Shorr-Parks
January 21, 2019 - 5:45 am

A lot can change in one year. So a report about what could happen a year from now should be taken for what it is. 

Still, there is no denying that the news that the Kansas City Chiefs plan to pay quarterback Patrick Mahomes a record deal in one year likely caught the attention of the front office at the NovaCare Complex. 

Per ESPN:

The Chiefs are expected to extend Mahomes' contract after next season, the first time the MVP candidate is eligible for an extension, and he could land the NFL's first $200 million contract, league sources told ESPN….When Mahomes likely reworks his contract over a year from now, it is expected to be a record-breaking deal, dwarfing the one that Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers signed last summer that pays him an annual average of $33.5 million.

Whether Mahomes actually lands the deal remains to be seen. What matters is that the threat of it is out there, and the threat of it will likely be used this offseason when quarterback Carson Wentz’s agents decide to make a run at a new deal. 

The question is, should the Eagles allow the threat of a Mahomes deal in 2020 impact what they do in 2019?

The answer to that is no. 

There is no denying that a record deal from Mahomes might increase what it costs to lock up Wentz long-term. If Wentz reaches his potential, he will likely see his name among the top paid quarterbacks in the NFL, and rightfully so. The 26-year old has the chance to break the bank with a strong 2019. 

The harsh reality, however, is that the benefit of signing Wentz now and beating Mahomes to a contract doesn’t outweigh the risk of doing it. 

As talented as Wentz is, he is also a quarterback coming off of a disappointing 2018 that ended with him sitting on the bench injured for the second year in a row. In three years, Wentz has suffered two season-ending injuries. The injuries are a real concern and something the Eagles have to take into account when they negotiate with Wentz. As of now, that is not something that will come up when Mahomes and the Chiefs negotiate next offseason. 

Handing Wentz a massive deal now — one that would likely make him the highest paid in the NFL right now — and seeing him suffer another serious injury in 2019 would be far more devastating to the Eagles’ franchise than the extra money they might have to pay him in one year. 

That isn’t to say they definitely shouldn’t pay Wentz this offseason. The decision to pay Wentz now as opposed to later is a complicated one for a number of reasons and will be debated at length this offseason. 

What is clear, however, is that they shouldn’t let the threat of a Mahomes deal next offseason pressure them into committing to Wentz earlier than they would otherwise. 

You can reach Eliot Shorr-Parks on Twitter at @EliotShorrParks or email him at esp@94wip.com!

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