Commanders QB Carson Wentz has finger surgery, will not play vs. Packers


The Washington Commanders’ quarterback carousel will spin but once more.

Carson Wentz underwent surgical procedure Monday in Los Angeles to restore a fractured ring finger on his proper hand, the crew said in a press release. He will start rehab instantly, however his timeline to return is unsure. The crew has not determined if it will place Wentz on injured reserve, however he will miss at the very least Sunday’s recreation towards the Green Bay Packers at FedEx Field, in response to an individual with information of the scenario.

That means the Commanders will once more flip to backup and fan favorite Taylor Heinicke to fill the void. Rookie Sam Howell is slated to function his backup.

Wentz suffered the damage late within the second quarter of Washington’s win at the Chicago Bears on Thursday, however he performed your entire recreation with no splint or tape for defense. He stated afterward that his hand was “a little sore” however added he could be “all right.”

Wentz noticed orthopedic surgeon Steven Shin at Cedars-Sinai’s Kerlan-Jobe Surgery Center on Monday to find out the subsequent steps, which included surgical procedure. Should Wentz find yourself on IR, he will must miss at the very least the subsequent 4 video games earlier than returning to observe.

After internet hosting the Packers on Sunday, the Commanders journey to Indianapolis to face Wentz’s earlier crew, the Colts, in Week 8. A house recreation towards the Minnesota Vikings and a visit to play the Philadelphia Eagles comply with.

Wentz’s damage is the most recent on a protracted record for the Commanders, who lost starting center Chase Roullier to a knee damage earlier within the season and are nonetheless without star defensive end Chase Young (ACL). Seven different starters have missed time this season due to accidents.

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The change to Heinicke is the ninth time the Commanders have switched beginning quarterbacks since 2020, when Ron Rivera was employed as coach. It’s additionally the third time the crew has switched to Heinicke.

The former Old Dominion star signed with Washington in December 2020 as an emergency quarterback in case of a coronavirus outbreak and acquired his first begin within the crew’s playoff loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in January 2021.

Heinicke impressed sufficient to land a second contract with the crew. Last yr, he stuffed in once more when Ryan Fitzpatrick suffered a season-ending hip damage in Week 1 and went on to steer Washington to a 7-8 report as a starter. It was clear on the finish of the season, nonetheless, that the Commanders deliberate to discover a longer-term starter who might stretch the sector vertically in coordinator Scott Turner’s offense.

So in March, Washington traded for Wentz and took on his full $22 million wage. The Commanders swapped 2022 second-round picks with the Colts and gave up two draft alternatives — a third-rounder in 2022 and a conditional third-rounder in 2023. The 2023 third-rounder would flip right into a second-rounder if Wentz have been to play 70 p.c of the Commanders’ snaps this season. Should he miss vital time, that turns into much less possible.

The worth was hefty for a beginning quarterback, particularly one who was traded twice in as many seasons with a slew of not-so-flattering studies that adopted. But Washington believed Wentz might stabilize its offense and revive his profession to turn into a long-term resolution. If something, he had the dimensions and the arm power, and it appeared that, with the precise items round him, the Commanders might create a extra explosive offense.

“It allows us to throw the ball vertical even more so than we have in the past,” Rivera stated in March throughout Wentz’s introductory information convention at crew headquarters. “… The vertical attack opens up a lot more things, opens up some things underneath in the passing game. It opens up some of the running game, knowing that [the defense is] not going to be able to put eight guys up in the box. … I think it will really help us to attack our opponents differently.”

The Commanders’ offense isn’t all new. But sometimes, it looks that way.

But the offense with Wentz on the helm has lagged for a lot of the previous six weeks. Wentz has taken 23 sacks, tied for the league excessive, and the Commanders rank among the many backside 9 in web yards, third-down conversion charge and scoring.

Though Heinicke lacks the teaching employees’s most well-liked dimension for the place and doesn’t have Wentz’s arm, his return might jump-start the Commanders — or at the very least assist them play on the stage they did final season. Injuries to Wentz’s knee and again over time seemingly have curtailed his athleticism, limiting the offense and its playbook. Heinicke’s knack for improvising and escaping the pocket to keep away from strain might assist Washington maintain performs alive and prolong drives.

Another change at quarterback, although, leaves the Commanders in a precarious place throughout their third season of a rebuild with Rivera. Despite adjustments to the roster, the entrance workplace and the model, the Commanders might look very similar to the crew that trotted out two years in the past: nonetheless in want of an answer at quarterback.

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