To say that Carson Wentz has been disappointing to start the season for the Washington Commanders would be a bit of an understatement. As it turns out, head coach Ron Rivera seems to feel this exact same way, and he wasn’t shy about stating his opinion on the matter.
The NFC East is looking like a different beast right now, with the Philadelphia Eagles holding the only unbeaten record in the entire league at 5-0. The New York Giants and the Dallas Cowboys are currently both 4-1. The Commanders, on the other hand, are down 1-4.
When asked why he thinks his Commanders have fallen behind compared to their NFC East rivals, Rivers had a blunt one-word response: “quarterback.”
This is the back and forth everybody is talking about right now.
Great line of questioning from @Matthew_Paras to Ron Rivera.
Why are the other NFC East teams farther ahead at this point?
Rivera – "Quarterback"
— Scott Abraham (@Scott7news) October 10, 2022
Without directly saying it, it seems like Rivera is pinning most of the blame on Wentz, who the Commanders traded for from the Indianapolis Colts during the offseason. Ron Rivera gave that deal his blessing.
Rivera’s contentious comments did not sit well at all with former Washington quarterback Alex Smith. The three-time Pro Bowl QB could not help but criticize the Commanders coach for throwing Wentz under the bus (h/t Kimberley A. Martin of ESPN):
“I had a really hard time watching that,” Smith said. “When I heard it, I couldn’t believe it. I’m not here to defend Carson Wentz … But this is a defensive HC that’s absolutely driving the bus over his quarterback.”
There’s no denying that Wentz hasn’t been playing his best football of late. However, for him to be singled out by his own coach, no less, is a bit harsh, don’t you think?