Name: Carson Wentz
Age: 25 years old (turns 26 in late December)
Team: Philadelphia Eagles
2016 Stats: 3,782 yards passing, 16 TD, 14 INT. 46 rushes for 150 yds, 2 TD.
2017 Stats: 3,296 yards passing, 33 TD, 7 INT. 64 rushes for 299 yds, 0 TD.
2018 Projections: 526 attempts, 3,816 yards passing, 28 TD, 11 INT. 67 rushes for 280 yds, 2 TD.
Projected 2018 Fantasy Rank (FantasyPros): QB7
– Carson Wentz was having a very solid season in 2017 through 13 weeks, scoring at least 2 TDs in 7 straight weeks at one point while the Eagles were rolling as the top seed in the NFC.
– Let me describe this for you. During a monster performance in week 14 versus the Rams where he already had almost 300 yards passing, 4 passing TDs and setting the Eagles single-season record for touchdowns with 33, Wentz took a huge shot to his lower half on a TD run by Mark Barron, which was negated. 4 plays later Wentz threw a TD to Alshon Jeffery. Wentz then went in to the medical tent under his own power without even the slightest limp. He proceeded to head to the locker room.
– My suspicion is, Wentz’s knee didn’t feel right after the big hit and he continued to play through it. He then was evaluated in the medical tent where likely the head athletic trainer, and eventually team orthopedist evaluated him, likely with a series of knee tests, including anterior draw, posterior draw, and the Lachman’s test. Not happy with the results, meaning that there was “too much give in the knee, where it should be tight” Wentz was sent to the locker room. Once you hear a player is ruled out immediately, you have to be concerned.
– Less than hour after he departed the game, Adam Schefter reported that Wentz had likely torn his ACL and would undergo an MRI the following morning to confirm. Monday morning rolls around, and the MRI confirms that not only did Wentz tear his ACL, but also his LCL as well. The LCL, called the lateral collateral ligament, is on the outside of the knee. It runs up to down and is responsible for preventing the knee from buckling towards the outside.
– Pittsburgh Orthopedic surgeon Dr. James Bradleyperformed Wentz’s ACL reconstruction surgery on December 13th, just 3 days after sustaining the injury. Initial RTP timeline was 9-12 months, the standard ACL recovery time period, which would put him returning around late August/early September, just in time for the 2018 season assuming his rehab went well. Typically, people are not back to 100% until a couple months after they have officially returned to sport, and are able to get their bearings back.
– Ok, so let’s talk about the studies revolving ACL reconstruction surgeries and how the players perform when they return. Well, I’m probably starting to sound like a broken drum, as this is the 4th ACL tear in less than 10 episodes, but that’s what makes this data so important, because this injury is so COMMON.
– What does the data say? Here’s the highlights: there is a 94% success rate after ACL reconstruction surgery, which means there is a 6% re-tear rate. There’s a 6x increased risk of a 2nd ACL injury when compared to healthy subjects. 30% of athletes suffered a 2nd ACL injury within 24 months of return to sport, and within those 21% had a contralateral ACL tear, and 9% had a graft re-tear.
– We know that movements that involve landing, cutting or pivoting pose the greatest threat to the integrity of the ACL. So what does the data say about QBs who suffered ACL tears? There’s a good article from the USA Today in 2016 that discusses the injuries to Donovan Mcnabb, Tom Brady, RGIII and some others. The data is pretty clear; there is an expected drop in performance after an ACL tear, especially in players who are mobile – like Wentz and fellow ACL-tear mobile QB DeShaun Watson. Wentz’s has the ability to extend the pocket with his mobility, as shown by his 300 yards rushing in 2017 before the injury.
– An article from NBC Sports from March of this year reviewed ACL injuries in WRs, and the data is quite interesting. Listen to the Cameron Meredith episode for the full study details, but the jist of the study is that high-level athletes who were around age 25 when they tore their ACL, and remember Wentz was 24 when he tore his, manage to do quite wellupon return. The physical therapists have nearly perfected the ACL reconstruction rehab and as long as Wentz doesn’t rush his rehab – like Andrew Luck tried to do with his shoulder rehab – there’s a very good chance he will have a wonderful career.
The good news is that Wentz practiced, in full pad,with the first-team offense this past weekend. Progress! All signs are pointing that Wentz will be able to play in Week 1 against the Falcons.
Is Wentz at risk to tear his ACL again? Yes, about 6 times increase in fact! 30% of athletes suffered a 2ndACL injury within 2 years of return to sport.
2018 Health Outlook:
Amidst Wentz’s fantastic 2017 season, he unfortunately suffered a devastating knee injury that ended his season short. Nick Foles managed to carry the team to a Super Bowl victory to everyone’s surprise. Wentz should be close to 100% by now, and I fully expect him to suit up in week 1. While there is a always a chance that Wentz suffered some decline in performance secondary to his knee injury, the good news is that he is not a RB or WR, who have a tendency to see a greater drop in performance than QBs.
Risk of Re-Injury: 30% risk of having another ACL tear within 2 years, 6% risk of re-tear.
– There has been some concerning rumblings at Eagles camp regarding Wentz, specifically from Eagles coach Doug Pederson, who stated that he saw “a little hesitation” in Wentz. While this is expected, I’m concerned that the staff may end up holding Wentz out longer that fans and fantasy owners would like.
– Despite his injury, I think Wentz has tons of upside in 2018. He is loaded with weapons, Zach Ertz, Alshon Jeffery, Nelson Agholor, Mike Wallace, Jay Ajayi and Corey Clement.
– Wentz has the potential to outdo his 2017 season where he set the Eagles all-time TD record
– I think there’s about 24 QBs that could land in the top 12 this year, so I won’t be reaching for a QB. With that being said, I would not shy away from drafting Wentz if he was available.
– Look for him and the Eagles to have another stellar season as they try to defend their Super Bowl title.
NFL Draft Day is Here!!
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Waiver Wire: NFL Week 14
Fantasy football teams are starting to take shape. Hitting the waiver wire is a critical task in filling the holes or adding significant depth, especially as we enter bye-weeks and an increasing list of injuries. My goal is to find you the best player available for the lowest owned percentage. Therefore, you will see some of the more prominent names under others to consider.
Philip Rivers–IND (ESPN-16.5%) (Yahoo-40%)
Rivers has averaged at least 292 passing yards and two touchdowns in his last six games, and he just feels short of theaverage against Houston with 285 yards and two scores. In the next two weeks, the Colts will face Las Vegas, who allows over 20 Fantasy Points Per Game to quarterbacks, and Houston. Getting Rivers will bring you a top streaming signal-caller for two-straight weeks.
Others to Consider: Jalen Hurts (PHI), Mitchell Trubisky(CHI), Sam Darnold (NYJ), Tua Tagovailoa (MIA), Baker Mayfield (CLE).
Cam Akers-LAR (ESPN-35.8%) (Yahoo-53%)
Akers has seen an increase in snaps over the last few weeks, and he may have full ownership after his 21 carries for 72 yards while catching a pass for another 22 yards and a score. Both Malcolm Brown and Darrell Henderson will have a role, but Akers should be the bell-cow. The Rams tried him at the goal line on several attempts, but he couldn’t punch it in. Rams face the Patriots and Jets in the next few weeks, and both teams he should exploit for good fantasy performances.
Cordarrelle Patterson-CHI (ESPN-4.8%) (Yahoo-7%)
Patterson has become a running back, and he fits the role well. David Montgomery will be the bell-cow when healthy, but Patterson has gotten extensive looks. Against the Lions, Patterson carried the rock 10 times for 59 yards and a touchdown. Patterson has spent his career as a receiver; therefore, catching the ball is no issue. The Bears have Houston this week, and they are horrible against the run.
Ty Johnson-NYJ (ESPN-0.3%) (Yahoo-2%)
The ancient one Frank Gore was the Jets bell-cow until he suffered a concussion. Enter Johnson, who rushed 22 times for 104 yards and a score. Johnson showed promise and someone who deserves more of a look. He will face the Seahawks and Rams next, but he is of good value this late in the season.
Others to Consider: Peyton Barber (WAS), Phillip Lindsay(DEN), Gus Edwards (BAL), Carlos Hyde (SEA), Jeff Wilson(SF), Ito Smith (ATL), Benny Snell (PIT), Adrian Peterson(DET).
T.Y. Hilton-IND (ESPN-47.0%) (Yahoo-45%)
Through 11-weeks, Hilton was sitting on the garbage pile. Then against the Titans, he caught his first touchdown on the season to go along with four receptions for 81 yards. It got even better against the Texans as Hilton brought in 8 balls on 11 targets for 110 yards and a score. He is looking more and more like the stud we drafted him to be. Now the Colts face the Raiders and Texans in back-to-back weeks.
Jalen Guyton-LAC (ESPN-0.3%) (Yahoo-0%)
Guyton was on speed-dial for Justin Herbert. He targeted his receiver seven times, and Guyton brought in two for 38 yards. Fantasy owners may wonder how Guyton can be valuable with Mike Williams, but looking at the numbers and there isn’t much difference. On the season, Guyton has 20-369-3 while Williams stat line 36-572-4 in 11 games. That is just one reception and 18-yards more on average. The Chargers have Atlanta and Las Vegas next, which are prime spots for exploitation.
Rashard Higgins-CLE (ESPN-3.4%) (Yahoo-8%)
Higgins is the one that looks to be the number two receiver, and he lit up the Titans last week for six receptions, 95 yards, and a touchdown. Higgins has deep speed and will make plays downfield. The schedule will be tough next week against Baltimore, but the Giants and Jets could be an easy route for teams in the playoffs and championship.
Others to Consider: Tim Patrick (DEN), Keke Coutee (HOU), Sterling Shepard (NYG), Nelson Agholor (LAS), DenzilMims (NYJ), Breshad Perriman (NYJ), Gabriel Davis (BUF), Allen Lazard (GB).
Logan Thomas-WFT (ESPN-24.9%) (Yahoo-40%)
The Washington Football Team likes to target Thomas, which was prevalent against the Pittsburgh Steelers on Monday Afternoon Football. Thomas brought in nine balls for 98 yards and a touchdown on nine targets. Even outside this performance, he is getting at least four targets each game. Thomas has another tough performance next week against San Francisco, but the Seahawks and Panthers are scheduled for Weeks 15 and 16.
Others to Consider: Jordan Reed (SF), Cole Kmet (CHI), Anthony Firsker (TEN), Dalton Schultz (DAL), Kyle Rudolph (MIN), Jacob Hollister (SEA), Jordan Akins(HOU).