There have been some terrible columns written about Carson Wentz.
Previously sitting on the Iron Throne was Jonathan Jones from CBS Sports, who said that Wentz was avoiding criticism due to his white privilege. That column was a total head scratcher considering the fact that Wentz wasn’t avoiding criticism at all. He was quite possibly the most criticized quarterback in the entire league this season. He got absolutely killed and is still getting killed now, in the offseason, even after his trade.
But Jones has been dethroned and replaced with this steaming pile of garbage:
— Deadspin (@Deadspin) February 20, 2021
I hate the fact that I’m even sharing a zombie Deadspin story, since all of the talented writers left that site to start Defector, resulting in a bunch of scabs taking over at the old place.
The author is some guy named Ed Condran, who may or may not have written the headline. Whomever picked those words is 0-2 right off the bat, since they stereotyped an entire region and then irresponsibly suggested that we can make assumptions regarding racism, which you can’t. You can’t assume anything, ever.
A month before the disgruntled Carson Wentz was traded by the Philadelphia Eagles to the Indianapolis Colts, there was a poll conducted by Philly sports radio outlet, 97.5 The Fanatic.
Rule #1 – Never cite a sports talk radio poll.
Somehow 41 percent of Eagles fans would have preferred the Birds kept the underachieving and overpaid North Dakota State product over Jalen Hurts, who replaced Wentz as the starting quarterback with four games remaining in the 2020 season.
41% means more people wanted Hurts than Wentz.
Hurts on the other hand appears to be a team player and a leader with escapability, which makes him the anti-Wentz.
However, many Birds fans hoped to keep the enigmatic and unproductive Wentz over the promising and energizing Hurts.
Rule #2 – Don’t generalize. I can say with certainty that “many” Birds fans did not want to keep Carson Wentz. We had a very large portion of the fan base that wanted him gone. Some wanted him gone in 2018, and wanted to keep Nick Foles instead. Some wanted Carson out after the 2018 and 2019 seasons. A lot of folks wanted him gone after this season. I’m willing to bet the portion of fans who wanted to keep Wentz around is not half as large as the national media thinks it is.
Is the reason for that inexplicable choice simply racism?
Nobody wanted to keep Wentz because he was white and Hurts was black. Plus, Carson got criticism for being this duck-hunting, North Dakota country bumpkin who didn’t really fit on the East Coast. A lot of white people in the Delaware Valley ragged him constantly for this and never truly felt a connection with a religious guy from middle America.
Most of the arguments in favor of Wentz stemmed from the idea that, one, he could perhaps recapture his 2017 form, or, two, that once the injury situation was remedied, that he’d start playing well again. Wentz fans were certainly not anti-Hurts, they just thought it was a bad idea to draft a quarterback in the second round and create a QB controversy out of nothing. If you ask the average Wentz supporter, they probably like Jalen Hurts’ game and wanted to see more of him this season, prior to the benching.
Eagles fans are a lot of things, but history has shown that they first and foremost support winners, and it doesn’t matter who those people are or what color their skin is. This is a fan base that overwhelmingly gave Michael Vick a second chance coming out of jail. Same fans who supported many years of Donovan McNabb, despite his shortcomings in big games. Randall Cunningham, Rodney Peete etc. If you got back over the last 20 years of Eagles football, black quarterbacks have started 13 of those seasons at QB1. And then going back to the post-Jaws days, you had Cunningham and Peete starting what ended up being a majority of the seasons. Philly has had more successful black quarterbacks than most NFL franchises.
Plus, some of the most vocal Wentz critics in this town are white. White guys who wanted Foles instead. White guys on the radio. White guys in the Crossing Broad Slack channel who can’t stand Wentz and wanted him out of here last year. Carson was greatly disliked across the entirety of the socioeconomic spectrum. We could have healed the world with our common thread of hating the Eagles’ quarterback.
You can level accusations of racism against a fan base, but it’s never something that can ever be proven. I’m absolutely sure that there were biased people who were frustrated with Donovan and thought a white QB could have done better, but you can’t just write an entire article on that and place the word “assume” in the headline. No editor at a respectable outlet would ever let something like that run.
Racism has long and deep roots in Philadelphia sports. Phillies manager Ben Chapman was arguably the most vicious individual the iconic Jackie Robinson dealt with after breaking the color line in 1947 with the Brooklyn Dodgers.
Dick Allen endured racial harassment. When the legendary figure, who deserves to be enshrined in the Baseball Hall of Fame, had his number retired last summer by the Phillies, Mike Schmidt spoke of the unrelenting racism directed at Allen.
Now we’re getting sidetracked. 1947 was 74 years ago. Dick Allen played here in the 1960s. In 2021, we are two generations removed from the sad and disappointing things that were said and done back then, which have nothing to do with Carson Wentz and Jalen Hurts. It’s true that those were very poor years in Philadelphia, but we have come a very long way in the six or seven decades that have since transpired.
Much changed by the time Jimmy Rollins and Ryan Howard became Phillies stars during the first decade of this centurys. However, J-Roll and Howard were never embraced like Chase Utley, who played between them at second base.
This is purely subjective, as is most of what’s written in the article. It goes on to bring up the same McNabb and Cunningham tropes we’ve heard for years, that people didn’t like Donovan because he was “goofy” or whatever. Yes, it’s true he didn’t “connect” with the fan base like most people had hoped, but it didn’t mean people didn’t cheer for the guy on the field. He was just sort of aloof in the media and said weird things from time to time.
Anyway, that’s about it. The article is terrible. “Racist Philly fans wanted to keep Carson Wentz.” That’s the dumbest thing you could ever write, considering the fact that boatloads of people didn’t want him at all. They wanted him gone last year and the year before.