According to Adam Schefter the Eagles and Colts have agreed to a long rumored trade for Carson Wentz. The Eagles will receive a 3rd round pick in 2021 and a 2nd round pick in 2022. This pick can escalate to a 1st round pick based on playing time thresholds of 75% and no playoffs or 70% with the playoffs. Wentz has played 75% of the Eagles snaps three times in five years, though one of the years was very close to not meeting it (77%). I’d say that is a fair threshold for both sides.
The Eagles will take on an NFL record $33.82 million in dead money on this trade due to the nature of Wentz’ contract. Wentz received a $16.37 million signing bonus in 2019 and then a massive $30 million option bonus in 2020. The trade opens up virtually no money for the Eagles this year since Wentz was to count for $34.67 million on the cap. The prior NFL record for dead money in a single season was $21.8 million.
This was a move that the Eagles really needed to have clarity on now. This gives the team a much better idea as to how they will approach their salary cap situation this year now that Wentz is out. This locks in their cap charge on him this season and means they are free of any Wentz related money in 2022. Wentz was to count for $31.3 million on the Eagles cap next year so that is a lot of extra space for Philadelphia to play with either on extensions or restructures for 2021 cap relief.
This extension, like the Goff one in LA, will end up a wild failure for the organization. The Eagles wound up with exactly zero seasons played beyond Wentz’ rookie contract which would have run through 2020. The Eagles signed him to the four additional years, paying Wentz an extra $29.6 million across the 2019 and 2020 seasons as a “prepayment” of sorts on the new contract. He will never play a down for them in those extension years.
For the Colts this is a risk worth taking. The team had no access to a potential good quarterback and would be wasting a playoff roster with a journeyman quarterback. Wentz’ contract will cost the Colts $25.4 million in 2021, $22 million in 2022, $25 million in 2023, and $26 million in 2024. The 2021 and 2022 seasons are locked in for Wentz while the last two years are not. So if Wentz returns to a passable form the Colts should have a relatively cheap quarterback for the next four years. If he does not they will be faced with the same problems that plagued the Eagles this year with Wentz in 2022. They would, however, be free and clear in 2023.
Jason is the founder of OTC and has been studying NFL contracts and the salary cap for over 15 years. Jason has co-authored two books about the NFL, Crunching Numbers and the Drafting Stage, which are widely circulated in the industry and hosts the OTC Podcast. Jason’s work has been featured in various publications including the Sporting News, Sports Illustrated, NFL Network and more. OTC is widely considered the leading authority on contract matters in the NFL.