Three days after an ESPN report that — surprise, surprise — Carson Wentz is not interested in being a backup quarterback in Philadelphia and would want to be traded if Jalen Hurts ends up becoming the long-term starter, Eagles coach Doug Pederson said Wentz has been very supportive of Hurts since being benched in favor of the rookie.
“That’s one thing that Carson has not allowed to happen,” Pederson said when asked about the potential for disruption when a starting quarterback is benched. “And he’s not going to let it happen. He’s been a pro about it.”
Pederson said Wentz hasn’t sulked. He said he’s been talkative in meetings, just like he was before Hurts replaced him. He said he’s been supportive of Hurts and talks to the rookie during the week and during games.
“Listen, that’s something that I really appreciate about Carson,” Pederson said, “how he’s handled this. He doesn’t want to be a distraction to the team. He wants to help the team win. That’s the bottom line.
“We don’t let those kinds of things creep into our thinking and try to keep them out of the locker room so it won’t divide your team.”
At his morning videoconference, Pederson said cornerback Darius Slay, who missed Sunday’s 33-26 loss to Arizona with a concussion, has been cleared to play and will start Sunday against Dallas. He said rookie wide receiver Jalen Reagor, who tweaked his ankle against the Cardinals, also is fine and was expected to practice Wednesday.
Defensive end Josh Sweat, who injured his wrist Sunday and didn’t return to the game, will miss this week’s game. Punter Cam Johnston is in concussion protocol.
In addition to beating the Cowboys Sunday, the Eagles also need Carolina to defeat Washington to keep their playoff hopes alive. The Carolina-Washington game, which was initially scheduled for 1 p.m., has been flexed to 4:05. The Eagles also are playing in the late afternoon.
“We obviously have a big task against the Cowboys who played well Sunday,” Pederson said. “They got after San Francisco. We can’t control what the league does with scheduling. We’ve been in these kinds of situations before.
“I would prefer to go into a game not knowing [whether they need to win to remain alive]. I think it gives you a level of concentration and focus that you need going into a football game.
“Once we tee it up on Sunday, we’re all about the game. We’re into the game. We’re coaching and playing and then we’ll see what happens at the end.”