What would Brandon Graham’s advice be for struggling Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz
PHILADELPHIA – Brandon Graham spent the early 2010s unsure of his future in football. The former first-round pick lost an early season to injury, then the Eagles the defensive end ended up watching from the bench for much of that time as well.
It wasn’t until his sixth season in the league that he became a full-time starter, and over the past five years he has thrived. So he knows what it’s like to be a player with expectations and not succeed. And he also knows it’s possible for a second act or a comeback.
Eagles bench quarterback Carson Wentz earlier this week in favor of rookie Jalen Hurts. There are a lot of uncertainties regarding Wentz’s future not only in Philadelphia but also in the NFL. Graham has been in a similar scenario before, albeit with less publicity. And during a Zoom call Thursday morning, Graham shared what his advice would be for Wentz.
“Try not to worry about what people are going to say because only you know what’s going on and how to fix it,” Graham said. “And the way you solve it really works on the things that you need to improve on and the things that tend to come up all the time. So for me it’s, I need to get off the ball faster. I have to start doing it myself. When people start telling you what they see, from the outside to the inside, those decisions are yours to make. Keep working hard. Keep building where you are weak.
“You definitely know you can go back to where you were before because we still have a lot of faith in Carson. We have seen it. We know it’s right for him to come out and keep working the way he does. So don’t worry about what the naysayers say. It doesn’t matter because you are the one who can change what people say by the way you work. That’s what held me back here, how hard I worked and how hard I tried to flip that negative and turn it into a positive.
Coach Doug Pederson said on Wednesday he was Wentz’s work to “embrace” and “understand” his current situation in order to make it the positive mentioned by Graham. After being put on the bench in the Packers game, Wentz said he didn’t necessarily think taking time off would help turn the season around.
But Wentz had been one of the worst quarterbacks in the NFL in the first three quarters of the season, and there were few signs he was about to reverse his performance.
Hurts will have a chance, and Pederson would not engage in a beyond Sunday quarterback decision against the Saints.
Wentz might have another chance. Graham got chances later in his career after struggling early on. It’s just about the quarterback to take advantage of them and turn his current situation into a positive for his career.
Daniel Gallen covers the Philadelphia Eagles for PennLive. He can be contacted at [email protected]. You can follow it on Twitter and Facebook. Follow PennLive’s Philadelphia Eagles coverage on Twitter, Facebook and Youtube.