Eagles’ Foles, Wentz both want to lead a team
The two quarterbacks spoke on the same patch of carpet in the Eagles locker room about an hour apart as players cleaned out their lockers Monday following a divisional round loss to the New Orleans Saints.
Foles claims he hasn’t given much thought to his next step, saying he was so hungry after the flight Sunday night all he could think about was the pizza in his fridge. He did concede, though, that his goal is to land a starting job.
“Yeah, like I said, I would love to lead a team,” Foles said. “The starter thing, leading a team, impacting a locker room, that’s something that’s why we play the game, to impact people, to create an atmosphere.”
The Eagles can exercise a $20 million option in Foles’ contract for 2019, but the QB can buy his way out of that option and into free agency by paying back $2 million. That means, barring a franchise tag designation, he can be a free agent this offseason.
Foles, who flirted with retirement a few seasons back following a trying stint with the St. Louis Rams, said he’s not sure exactly how much longer he wants to play the game, but he says he has been “energized” by being part of the Eagles locker room over the past two seasons.
Foles turns 30 on Jan. 20.
“Whatever we decide, whatever contract we sign, we will always honor that contract years wise and then we go from there,” he said.
“If I can’t find the right reasons to do this game then I need to pursue something else, but right now, I’m really loving playing this game. … I’ve grown this last year more as a player than I ever have. I’m really starting to understand how I want to play this game. My game has changed, seeing what’s important and really just being myself.”
Wentz said that he would support whatever decision the Eagles make in respect to Foles, adding that a lack of egos in the quarterback room has allowed for a healthy environment.
“I know a couple things: I love Nick. I love that we’re like brothers in there, me Nick and Nate [Sudfeld], and the support we have for each other,” Wentz said. “Whatever happens is meant to happen and I think we’re all going to be successful in our own right.”
Wentz admits it was “super-frustrating” missing out on postseason play for a second straight year. A stress fracture was discovered in his back following a Week 14 game against the Dallas Cowboys, and he was forced to sit out the rest of the way. Foles stepped in and helped rally the team to three straight wins and a playoff berth.
Wentz suffered a torn ACL/LCL in his left knee last December. He recognizes that some will now label him injury-prone.
“I realize that’s other people’s opinions on things. I first and foremost am looking forward to hopefully putting that to rest over the next couple years,” he said.
“I know I will be fine. I know once I get healed and I do this the right way, long term this should be fine and not come back. That’s the positive.”
Wentz did not put a timetable on his recovery but said he hopes to be on the field with his teammates when the team’s offseason conditioning program starts up in the spring.
“Assuming rehab and everything goes well, hopefully come April once we get rolling again I can be back out there where that wasn’t necessarily the case last year,” he said. “So I think just going through the whole offseason program with everybody and being out there will be really big for us.”