That Nick Sirianni wouldn’t endorse Carson Wentz as his starter, or even that he would return next season, didn’t come as a surprise. But it did further emphasize that the Eagles aren’t 100 percent committed to the 28-year-old quarterback.

That isn’t exactly hard news, and it’s hard to blame the team for a cautious message during Sirianni’s introductory news conference, but the new Eagles coach’s non-answer answers about Wentz said plenty about his uncertain future.

If Wentz was as attached to the Eagles as general manager Howie Roseman said they were earlier this month — “Like fingers on your hand,” he described him — there would be no hesitation about publicly stating that he would return, and as the starter.

“I can’t answer that,” Sirianni said Friday when asked if Wentz would be back in 2021.

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The former Colts offensive coordinator then reiterated his response to previous questions that he still had to “evaluate the entire roster,” and that included the quarterback position. There was no special mention of Wentz as compared to Jalen Hurts, who replaced the benched starter for the final four-plus games of last season.

“We have two quarterbacks in Carson Wentz and Jalen Hurts that are top notch,” Sirianni said during an hour-long virtual call that included opening remarks from owner Jeffrey Lurie. “They’re top-notch quarterbacks. A lot of teams don’t have any.”

But in the NFL two can be worse than none, especially if neither is a sure bet. Obviously, Sirianni couldn’t hitch his wagon to Wentz — or to Hurts, for that matter. Neither was good enough to be handed the job. Which begged the question, if both return, shouldn’t there be an open competition?

“I’m not ready to say that, either way yet,” Sirianni said. “ … We don’t know any of these guys, really, yet, from what we’ve seen on tape so far because we haven’t watched any. So every position is going to be evaluated, and every position is going to be open.”

But every position isn’t the same, especially quarterback, and every quarterback isn’t the same, especially if one is still owed a guaranteed $60 million. Wentz is different and a significant portion of the Eagles’ interviews with candidates was devoted to proposed plans for him.

What’s important to note, however, is that Roseman has final say over the roster. He, ultimately, will make the decision on Wentz, with input from Lurie and Sirianni. He’s not going to keep a quarterback that his new coach doesn’t believe in, at least this early into their relationship.

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Wentz has some say in his future, but not as much as, say, Deshaun Watson. The disgruntled Texans quarterback has reportedly asked for a trade. He has more muscle than Wentz because he would be more attractive on the market, but also because his no-trade clause gives him control over where he may land.

There have been conflicting reports about Wentz’s supposed demand for a trade. But he hasn’t spoken publicly about football since Dec. 6 and what is apparent from his silence is his relationship with the Eagles is strained, even after one of the supposed sources of his discontent, Doug Pederson, was fired.

“I can’t speak on that,” Sirianni said of the Wentz-Eagles friction. “I’ve talked to Carson. … We’ve had good conversations.”

Sirianni said that he’s also spoken to Hurts, among other players. Declining to name Wentz the starter could also have been a sensitivity to the rising sophomore quarterback. The Eagles’ second-round investment in Hurts warrants as much.

The hiring of quarterbacks coach Brian Johnson, who played for Hurts’ father and recruited him at Mississippi State, also suggests a belief in the former Alabama-Oklahoma quarterback.

“We [the Colts] studied him last year. Had a great college tape,” Sirianni said. “He played meaningful snaps this year that he played well in.”

It isn’t only understandable that Sirianni would be unable to give concrete answers about Wentz, but also that Roseman doesn’t quite know what his plans are for the quarterback either. If he’s open to trading, which is likely, is there a team willing to deal for arguably the worst starter in 2020, that contract, and forfeit something in return?

A restructured deal that has the Eagles eating much of Wentz’s roster bonus would probably be necessary.

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The Eagles have likely gone over every scenario. They had over a week to prepare for Sirianni’s first interview with reporters. He did as expected with the quarterback question, but stumbled during an awkward opening statement.

He should be given the benefit of understanding that his first major news conference and the virtual setting could lead to some jittery moments. Lacking in public speaking doesn’t mean that Sirianni won’t become a good coach.

But to suggest that the 39-year-old aced the Eagles’ interview process and “shined” more than the other nine candidates, or that he “can command a room,” as Lurie did, strained credibility. As did Sirianni’s response that he hadn’t thought about a timeline for having an established starter.

“That hasn’t even crossed my mind,” he said.

It likely has, and was probably asked during the interview. Sirianni wouldn’t go into detail about discussions of “fixing” Wentz. It was a topic and one led by Lurie, per a source familiar with the interviews.

“There was definitely a vibe, especially from the owner, that Carson’s the guy,” the source said. “We can save Carson and I want to find the guy that can do that.”

But the Eagles were unlikely to unveil their hand during the process. Sirianni would have been told it after he signed his contract, the assumption being that he had some sway in the matter. But he wasn’t hired to fix Wentz. That is a false narrative.

Sirianni may have been hired because Lurie believes he can develop and nurture quarterbacks, among many other reasons. But to base such an important decision on one player would be shortsighted, especially when the Eagles increasingly made clear Friday that that one player may not be here in a few months.

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