One of the more surprising selections of this year's NFL Draft was when the Philadelphia Eagles took Oklahoma quarterback Jalen Hurts with the 53rd pick while already having franchise QB Carson Wentz locked up through 2024. 

The selection, however, did not catch Wentz off guard.  

Wentz said the Eagles called him before the draft to let him know they might pick a quarterback, and he was under the impression the organisation was not out to replace him. 

"It didn't really concern me," Wentz said on a conference call on Monday. "My reaction was, kind of understood. I had a feeling there was a chance we'd want to draft somebody given the way our roster is laid out and wanting to get younger.

"There was no concern for me. I think the team showed their investment in me last year and I've nothing but confidence and faith in them and they have nothing but confidence and faith in me. So I think it's all about strengthening that position and this group that we have.” 

Wentz, who signed a $128million extension less than a year ago, passed for a career-best 4,039 yards with 27 touchdowns and seven interceptions while playing all 16 regular-season games in 2019 before suffering a concussion in Philadelphia's Wild Card loss to the Seattle Seahawks. This came after both his 2017 and 2018 seasons were famously derailed by injuries. 

Despite his injury history, Wentz did not view the addition of Hurts as someone who will take his job. 

"With Jalen, I'm excited to add him to the team," Wentz said. "I know how important the quarterback position is, and how important the dynamic is for me and the other guys in that room.

"I've been blessed over the years to have some incredible not just quarterbacks, but incredible humans and friends in that quarterback room. We really endure a lot together and go through [a lot] together. So I'm excited. 

"I've heard nothing but good things about Jalen and the kid he is and the player he is."

Hurts also provides a different skill set at the position than Wentz as a dual-threat QB. 

After leading Alabama to back-to-back National Championship games as a freshman and sophomore before being benched for Tua Tagovailoa, Hurts then guided Oklahoma to a Big 12 title this past season as a senior while garnering third-team AP All-American honors.

He finished his four-year collegiate career with 9,477 passing yards with 80 touchdowns and another 3,274 rushing yards and 43 TD runs. 

Hurts' athletic ability potentially opens up Philadelphia's playbook and gives the team an opportunity to possibly line Hurts up on the outside or in the backfield along with Wentz. 

"We'll see how that all plays out," added Wentz. "We haven't gotten too deep into the playbook and how things are going to look. But for me, whatever's going to help us win.

"I came to Philly ever since being drafted and all I wanted to do was win and stand up there and hold up that Lombardi Trophy. Whatever that takes and whatever that's going to look like, I'm on board."

The Philadelphia Eagles stressed Carson Wentz's position is not under threat following the selection of Jalen Hurts, who was compared to Taysom Hill by head coach Doug Pederson.

Hurts was the only quarterback selected on the second day of the NFL Draft and his destination raised eyebrows as the Eagles picked the Oklahoma quarterback 53rd overall.

Philadelphia only gave starter Wentz a new four-year contract in 2019 and last year - his fourth in the NFL - he became the first Eagles quarterback to pass for 4,000 yards in a season as he led Pederson's side to the playoffs.

Dual-threat quarterback Hurts, who began his college career at Alabama, had a fine senior season with Oklahoma and finished second in the Heisman Trophy voting to Joe Burrow, the man who went first overall in the 2020 draft.

However, rather than seeing Hurts as someone to dislodge Wentz, Pederson thinks the two can work together in the same offense, in the manner Drew Brees and Hill do for the New Orleans Saints.

"He has a unique skill set," Pederson told reporters of Hurts.

"You see what Taysom Hill has done in New Orleans and how he and Drew Brees have a connection there and a bond there.

"And you look at [Joe] Flacco and Lamar [Jackson] in Baltimore for the short period of time, how they gelled together. It's just something we're going to explore."

The Eagles kept faith with Wentz in 2018 when he returned from a knee injury despite seeing Nick Foles lead them to victory at Super Bowl LII.

Foles left to sign for the Jacksonville Jaguars prior to last season and Wentz was the undisputed starter for 2019, and general manager Howie Roseman insisted the arrival of Hurts has not changed that.

"Nobody is going to be looking at a rookie quarterback as somebody who's going to be taking over [for] a Pro Bowl quarterback, a guy who's been on the cusp of winning an MVP," he said.

"We've shown how we feel about Carson by our actions, we showed it by the amount of picks we put into him and we showed it by the contract extension and we believe this is a guy to lead us to our next Super Bowl Championship.

"But, for better or worse, we are quarterback developers. We want to be a quarterback factory and we have the right people in place to do that and no team in the National Football League has benefited more from developing quarterbacks than the Philadelphia Eagles. This is who we are."

Carson Wentz says he was "so dang proud" of the Philadelphia Eagles' season and assured fans he would be "just fine" after a head injury in the playoff defeat to the Seattle Seahawks.

The Eagles lost Sunday's wild card game 17-9 at home to the Seahawks after quarterback Wentz was forced to exit in the first quarter, having taken a blow to the back of his helmet from Jadeveon Clowney.

Wentz had played the entire regular season for the first time since his rookie year, having suffered major injuries in 2017 and 2018 and missed Philadelphia's Super Bowl LII triumph.

Although his playoff debut ended on a sour note, the 27-year-old took to Instagram on Monday to send a message to fans, offering an update on his health while looking forward to the 2020 season.

"So dang proud of this team and how we battled and overcame so much this season," Wentz wrote. "Not the ending we envisioned but we will all grow and be stronger because of it!

"The fight and resiliency that this team displayed was so impressive. Love these guys!

"Also, appreciate the thoughts and prayers. I'm feeling good today and will be just fine! Head injuries are a scary thing so I appreciate everybody's thoughts and prayers.

"Hate not being out there to finish it out with my guys because of a play like that, but it's the unfortunate part of this game. It's all in God's plan, not mine! Trusting in him.

"Philly, year four was one fun ride. Appreciate the love and support - especially the real ones who were with us through the highs and lows.

"Onward to next year... big things comin', believe that!"

Seahawks defensive end Clowney speculated after the game he might receive death threats from "the worst fans in the world" in Philadelphia for the hit on Wentz, but he added there was no intent in the incident.

"I was just playing fast, and he turned like he was running the ball, so I was trying to get him down," Clowney said. "It was a bang-bang play.

"I don't intend to hurt anybody in this league, let me just put that out there. I've been down the injury road - it's not fun.

"That's a great player over there for their team and for their organisation. I hope he's okay. Like I said, I didn't intend to hurt him.

"I didn't even know he went out of the game until the next series. I thought it was just a small hit, but everybody was going crazy on the sidelines. I was just trying to finish the play, but it happened."

Philadelphia Eagles head coach Doug Pederson believes the NFC wild-card clash with the Seattle Seahawks would have been a different if star quarterback Carson Wentz did not suffer a head injury.

Wentz exited in the first quarter after hurting his head and did not return as the Eagles lost 17-9 to the Seahawks in the NFL playoffs on Sunday.

The Eagles signal caller took a blow to the back of his helmet from Seahawks defensive end Jadeveon Clowney and was replaced by 40-year-old back-up Josh McCown.

McCown – making his postseason debut following 17 seasons in the league – went 18 of 24 for 174 yards as the Eagles failed to reach the divisional round in Philadelphia.

Asked whether the game would have been different if Wentz was healthy, Pederson told reporters: "It's hard to say but I'd say yes if he was healthy. With the game plan we had, I think so. But it's hard to speculate."

The Eagles were hoping Wentz could lead the team deep into the playoffs after the 27-year-old played the entire regular season for the first time since his rookie year.

Wentz had suffered major injuries in 2017 and 2018 as Nick Foles stepped up to guide the Eagles to Super Bowl LII glory – Sunday's playoff appearance his first since being drafted in 2016.

"I feel for him. I feel bad for him," Pederson said of Wentz. "I briefly saw him in the dressing room afterwards.

"I'm disappointed for him. I wanted this for him. A lot of his team-mates did, too. So did the team and organisation. He's been through a lot."

Th Eagles endured an injury-ravaged season, but star tight end Zach Ertz managed to suit up and face the Seahawks, despite two non-displaced rib fractures sustained in Week 16.

Ertz was rushed to hospital after finding blood in his urine, however, he took to the field two weeks later and was teary-eyed post-game.

"It's been tough. It's been real tough," Ertz told reporters. "It hurts. Been a lot of highs and lows. My faith just kept me through it, kept me grounded. There was a plan for me.

"I just wanted it to be black and white, honestly. I took the emotion out of it. I just prayed that I wanted it to be clear. I didn't want it to be a grey area where it was an emotional decision. When it was unanimous that I was good to play, I knew that there was a plan and a reason, and that's why I was able to go."

"I wanted to play for this city," Ertz added. "I take a lot of pride [in] playing for my team-mates."

The Seattle Seahawks moved past the injury-hit Philadelphia Eagles courtesy of a 17-9 win in the NFL playoffs on Sunday.

Seattle set up a clash against the Green Bay Packers in the divisional round after proving too good for the Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field.

The Eagles lost quarterback Carson Wentz in the first quarter due to a head injury and never got to their best to trouble the Seahawks in the NFC wild-card showdown.

Seahawks QB Russell Wilson went 18 of 30 for 325 yards and a touchdown, but it was Seattle's defense that dominated.

They managed seven sacks, including six of Wentz's replacement Josh McCown.

McCown went 18 of 24 for 174 yards, but Wentz's injury, which came after a blow to the back of his helmet from Jadeveon Clowney, hurt the Eagles' chances.

The Seahawks needed until late in the second quarter to score their first TD as Marshawn Lynch spun over from five yards.

Jake Elliott's three field goals were all the Eagles could manage, with his second bringing them back to a 10-6 deficit in the third quarter.

However, Wilson connected with DK Metcalf with a 53-yard touchdown pass and the Seahawks were untroubled from then.

Metcalf starred with 160 receiving yards on seven receptions.

Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz will miss the remainder of the NFC wild-card clash against the Seattle Seahawks with a head injury.

Wentz, 27, left the field and was questionable to return after taking a blow to the back of his helmet from Seahawks defensive end Jadeveon Clowney in the first quarter of Sunday's NFL playoff game.

Veteran back-up Josh McCown replaced Wentz under center before the latter was officially ruled out by the Eagles after half-time in Philadelphia.

Wentz sat out Philadelphia's playoff run in 2017, his second season in the league, after tearing his anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) during the regular season.

In his absence, Nick Foles steered the franchise to their first Super Bowl triumph, as they beat the New England Patriots 41-33 in Minnesota.

Prior to the postseason showdown against the Seahawks, Wentz completed 388 passes for 4,039 yards and 27 touchdowns in 16 appearances.

The Philadelphia Eagles were forced to turn to Josh McCown at quarterback early on against the Seattle Seahawks after starter Carson Wentz suffered a head injury in the NFC wild-card clash.

Wentz was hurt while running the ball during the first quarter of Sunday's NFL playoff game, having taken a blow to the back of his helmet from Seahawks defensive end Jadeveon Clowney.

McCown came in for Philadelphia's next possession, with the Eagles announcing on Twitter that Wentz – making his postseason debut – was being evaluated, listing him as "questionable to return".

The 40-year-old back-up is with his ninth team in an NFL career that started back in 2002. He had announced his retirement after spending the previous two seasons with the New York Jets, only to be tempted back by the Eagles.

Wentz sat out Philadelphia's playoff run in 2017, his second season in the league, after tearing his anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) during the regular season.

In his absence, Nick Foles steered the franchise to their first Super Bowl triumph, as they beat the New England Patriots 41-33 in Minnesota.

Philadelphia Eagles star Carson Wentz said the team are "still hungry" after sealing the NFC East title and a wildcard berth on Sunday.

Wentz and the Eagles overcame a mounting injury list to see off the New York Giants 34-17 in their final regular-season game.

After topping NFL rivals the Dallas Cowboys (8-8) last week to seize control in the race for the NFC East and playoffs, the Eagles (9-7) made sure of their postseason place against the Giants.

Wentz, who set a franchise record for single-season completions (388) and became the first quarterback in Eagles history to reach 4,000 yards (4,039), finished 23 of 40 for 289 yards and a touchdown.

After two injury-hit seasons which forced him to miss Philadelphia's triumphant Super Bowl LII showdown in 2018, Wentz told reporters post-game: "I'm just extremely grateful to be healthy and to be playing in this meaningful game.

"And I know the guys are fired up. We're fired up. It was quite the regular season for us, with a lot of ups and downs, and the way we responded late in the year with our backs against the wall, to do what we did and to get to this moment, I think guys are thankful for it. But we're still hungry."

Philadelphia's injuries continue to add up after running back Miles Sanders (ankle) and Brandon Brooks (shoulder) were hurt against the Giants.

The Eagles – who will face either the San Francisco 49ers or Seattle Seahawks in the wildcard game – entered the contest without star tight end Zach Ertz due to a rib problem, all three of their original starting receivers, right tackle Lane Johnson and both starting cornerbacks.

"What I love about this football team is how we have stuck together the entire season through all the ups and downs, through all the injuries, we've battled, we've put ourselves in this position to win the NFC East," said head coach Doug Pederson.

"We've done that. But what I see from our players in they're already talking about next week, coming to work this week and preparing for next week, and it just tells me that the guys are in the right frame of mind."

Carson Wentz believes the Philadelphia Eagles' overtime victory over the New York Giants can prove to be a decisive moment in their season.

Wentz put on a second-half masterclass on Monday as the Eagles overturned a 14-point deficit to win 23-17 and keep their playoff hopes alive.

Zach Ertz was the hero as he caught a two-yard touchdown in OT, snapping a three-game losing streak for the Eagles (6-7).

Doug Pederson's team are now level with the Dallas Cowboys at the top of the NFC East standings, and Wentz is hopeful the Eagles can now kick on as the regular season approaches its conclusion.

"It's huge for us, we realise it was a sloppy game for a while but the way the guys hung tough and stayed together was huge. Guys stepping up and making plays is huge for their confidence and ours as a team," Wentz told a news conference.

"We realised our backs were against the wall. The first half was obviously very ugly, but we stayed together. We said to keep believing, we needed to make a decision which was going to define us. We knew it wasn't the first half.

"That was a rough one and ugly one, but we kept believing. Defence was going to take care of their pace, which they did, and offensively we did enough.

"This is huge for the whole team. To come in after half-time and be where we were, it's a season-on-the-line type thing. I was a little bummed we didn't win it in regulation but to come out in overtime and get the win is huge for me personally and the entire team.

"It's big for me and all these guys. The emotional rollercoaster of the day, realising how poor we were in the first half, it spurred us on in the second and we just kept making plays, I don't think I've had an overtime win, it was a lot of fun."

The Eagles have been rocked by injuries in recent weeks, and fielded makeshift or inexperienced receivers, including Boston Scott, who put in a standout display.

"We've seen what he's done in camp and preseason but his opportunities have been limited throughout the season," Wentz said of Scott.

"To step up the way he did, running between the tackles, outside the tackles, making plays in the screen game and the passing game, he did a great job and he was the little spark plug for us there. 

"I'm going to evaluate every play and there's a lot of things I can be better on as well. I just kept trusting the plays, trusting the guys and tried to play fast. I can't say enough good things about the guys who stepped up for us.

"A lot of guys were in positions that we didn't practice this week but that's how it goes sometimes. Not only making the physical plays but mentally being locked in was huge for us."

The Philadelphia Eagles rallied to beat the New York Giants 23-17 in overtime and keep their postseason hopes alive.

In a gritty performance in Philadelphia on Monday, Zach Ertz caught a two-yard touchdown in OT to secure victory as the Eagles overcame a 17-3 deficit.

The victory snapped a three-game losing streak and saw the Eagles (6-7) move level with rivals the Dallas Cowboys (6-7) for the NFC East lead.

In a crucial game for the Eagles, it was Eli Manning and the Giants who made a strong start at Lincoln Financial Field.

Making his first start since Week 2, Giants quarterback and two-time Super Bowl MVP Manning threw two touchdowns to Darius Slayton.

After a scoreless first quarter, Manning – who finished 15 of 30 for 203 yards and two TDs – threw a 35-yard pass to Slayton before connecting with the rookie again as half-time approached.

Fans booed the Eagles as they headed into the locker room at half-time, with Philadelphia's only score a Jake Elliott field goal.

The Eagles dug deep in the second half – quarterback Carson Wentz leading the rally as the hosts reduced the Giants' lead to 17-10 entering the final quarter.

Wentz helped level the contest at 17-17 when he found Ertz on a two-yard pass with less than two minutes remaining in regulation, before the pair combined again in additional time.

Wentz ended the game 33-of-50 for 325 yards and two touchdowns, while he also had five carries.

Carson Wentz said Philadelphia Eagles fans have every right to be frustrated but the embattled quarterback is confident he can return to form.

Wentz struggled as the Eagles – Super Bowl LII champions – dropped to 5-6 for the NFL season following last week's 17-9 loss to the high-flying Seattle Seahawks.

The under-fire QB finished 33 of 45 for 256 yards, a touchdown and four turnovers – two interceptions and two lost fumbles – to headline Philadelphia's woes.

Wentz, who has overcome a bruised right hand ahead of Sunday's clash with the Miami Dolphins, understands how the team's supporters are feeling.

"They have a right to be frustrated," Wentz told reporters on Wednesday. "They pay money to sit in those seats. They pay money to cheer us on, and they're so passionate about it. And I'm the same way. So when they're frustrated, I'm frustrated, too."

Asked whether it has been harder to play stress-free over the past couple of weeks, Wentz said: "Not really. Just because, shoot, there's always stress, there's always pressure, there's always that stuff.

"For me, just to be confident in who I am, the good, the bad, the ugly. I don't really get caught up in what people say, think, whether it's good, whether it's bad. I'm confident in who I am as a player. 

"You're going to go through highs and lows, you're going to go through peaks and valleys. For me, just being confident in who I am as a person, as a player and as a man of God. That's really all that matters. 

"I have so much confidence in my ability to turn this around and do my best and get these things fixed, that I don't get too high or too low going through these things."

Meanwhile, the Eagles signed kicker Jake Elliott to a five-year contract extension through to 2024.

Carson Wentz is recovering from a bruised throwing hand but Philadelphia Eagles head coach Doug Pederson expects his quarterback to be fine for the Miami Dolphins game.

Wentz hurt his right hand as the Eagles were beaten 17-9 by the high-flying Seattle Seahawks in NFL action on Sunday.

The under-fire QB finished 33 of 45 for 256 yards, a touchdown and four turnovers – two interceptions and two lost fumbles – as the Eagles fell to 5-6.

Following further testing on Monday, Pederson told reporters: "He's got a little bruise in his hand, kind of on the middle finger there. Day to day, should be fine for the game."

Asked if Wentz will miss any practice time ahead of Sunday's clash with the Dolphins, Pederson replied: "No".

Meanwhile, the Eagles waived wide receiver Jordan Matthews on Monday.

Matthews re-signed with the Eagles on November 11 and played two games – contributing 33 yards on four receptions.

The 27-year-old was initially drafted by the Eagles in 2014 before stints with the Buffalo Bills and New England Patriots prior to his Philadelphia return in 2018.

Matthews was signed by the San Francisco 49ers in March, but he was released in October, leading to a brief reunion with the Eagles.

Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz said he is not worried about the hand issue sustained in a loss against the Seattle Seahawks.

Wentz hurt his right hand as the Eagles were beaten 17-9 by the high-flying Seahawks in NFL action on Sunday.

Eagles head coach Doug Pederson revealed Wentz's X-rays came back negative post-game.

While Wentz is set for further tests, the under-fire Eagles QB is not worried.

"I don't think so," Wentz replied when asked if there was anything to be concerned about. "But obviously we'll wait and see."

It was another rough outing for Wentz as the Eagles fell to 5-6 – losing further ground to the Dallas Cowboys in the NFC East.

Wentz finished 33 of 45 for 256 yards, a touchdown and four turnovers – two interceptions and two lost fumbles.

"I have to be better. I have to lead this football team better. I have to protect the football better. I can't put it on the ground the way we did," Wentz said.

"It starts with me. It starts with me and I'm frustrated. I know everyone's frustrated with this loss offensively."

Carson Wentz had a Sunday to forget as the Philadelphia Eagles were beaten 17-9 in an NFC battle with the Seattle Seahawks, while Frank Gore moved third on the all-time NFL rushing list.

The injury-hit Eagles really needed a win to put pressure on NFC East leaders the Dallas Cowboys, but fell to 5-6 after quarterback Wentz and the Philadelphia offense failed to fire in Week 12.

Second-placed Seattle are 9-2 in the NFC West after improving their perfect record on the road to 6-0, Rashaad Penny playing a huge part in their fourth consecutive win.

Gore moved past Barry Sanders on the list of the leading rushers in a 20-3 victory for the Buffalo Bills over the Denver Broncos. 

Wil Lutz's last-gasp field goal snatched a 34-31 win for the New Orleans Saints over the Carolina Panthers, while Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph was benched in a 16-10 success against the Cincinnati Bengals.

There were also victories for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Chicago Bears, New York Jets, Cleveland Browns and Washington Redskins. 

 

WENTZ UNABLE TO GET EAGLES SOARING

Eagles signal caller Wentz's critics were out in force again after he was 33 of 45 for 256 yards, with one touchdown.

There were also two interceptions and a couple of lost fumbles for the 26-year-old, who was also reportedly checked out for a hand injury.

Wentz threw a TD pass to Zach Ertz in the final minute, but the damage had already been done.

Seattle running back Rashaad Penny ran for a career-best 129 yards, including a 58-yard touchdown, while MVP contender Russell Wilson was sacked six times but was 13 of 25 for 200 yards, with one TD and one pick.

 

GORE THE MERRIER

Star running back Gore moved beyond Hall of Famer Sanders' tally of 15,269 yards with a seven-yard dart in the fourth quarter of a victory for the Bills.

Gore made 65 yards in 15 carries and took his career total to an astonishing 15,289 yards.

Buffalo are 8-3 in the AFC East behind the New England Patriots, while the struggling Broncos are 3-8 at the foot of the AFC West.

 

LUTZ SEALS DRAMATIC SAINTS WIN

Lutz stepped up as time expired to give the Saints a four-game lead over the Panthers at the top of the NFC South

Joey Slye missed a field goal at the other end from 28 yards out with two minutes to play, but Lutz held his nerve with a 33-yard kick.

Two attempts from Christian McCaffrey were in vain as Drew Brees completed 30 of 39 passes for 311 yards and three touchdowns in a captivating contest.

 

MORE PAIN FOR RUDOLPH

Rudolph was fined $50,000 for his part in an ugly brawl late in a defeat to the Browns last week.

Browns defensive end Myles Garrett ripped off Rudolph's helmet and hit him on the head with it as things got out of hand in Week 11.

Steelers quarterback Rudolph escaped a ban, but he was sidelined during the clash with the sorry Bengals when Devlin Hodges replaced him during the third quarter.

Hodges wasted no time in making an impact, picking out James Washington for a 79-yard catch-and-run touchdown as the Bengals suffered yet another loss to go 0-11.

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