- The Washington Times
Monday, March 28, 2022

The Indianapolis Colts may have traded Carson Wentz this offseason, but the new Commanders quarterback still has the strong support of his former coach.

Speaking to reporters at the NFL’s annual owners meetings, Colts coach Frank Reich called Wentz a “really good quarterback” — one who can still perform at a high level. The Colts, of course, moved on after just one season with Wentz under center, but Reich said that was a decision the organization had to make. 

“I love the guy, I really do,” Reich said. “I think he‘s going to play really well for the Commanders and I’m excited to see that. … We as an organization thought highly of Carson in a lot of ways. Obviously, we traded for him. But then secondly, sometimes you can’t explain everything. You want to, but you just have to make a move that you think is right.” 

After the Wentz trade, The Athletic reported that Reich personally apologized to owner Jim Irsay for vouching for the quarterback. The Colts gave up a first-round pick and more for Wentz last offseason, and while the quarterback played well for stretches, Indianapolis ended the season on a two-game losing streak that prevented it from making the playoffs. Reich previously coached Wentz in Philadelphia, where he served as Wentz‘s offensive coordinator.

“It’s 2022, not everything is a storybook ending,” Reich said. “Those are the decisions that an organization has to make, that has the leaders of an organization has to make, that the leaders of an organization have to make. Mr. Isray, (GM Chris Ballard) and I sat down and that was just the decision that we felt like was best for our team at this point.” 

The Colts moved on without an immediate successor in place for Wentz. However, a few weeks after the deal, Indianapolis found its quarterback — trading a third-rounder for former MVP Matt Ryan. 

Commanders coach Ron Rivera has said he talked to Reich as part of his research into Wentz and received nothing but a glowing endorsement. Wentz is coming off a season in which he threw 27 touchdowns to seven interceptions, though he struggled with his accuracy — completing 62.4% of his passes

• Matthew Paras can be reached at mparas@washingtontimes.com.

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