3 reasons Commanders should bench Carson Wentz for Taylor Heinicke
By Jerry Trotta
1. Heinicke can better navigate pressure
Wentz’s athleticism for a QB of his stature is one of his many compelling attributes. At times, Wentz takes the form of Patrick Mahomes or Josh Allen with how he eludes oncoming pass rushers (see the Parsons dodge from Sunday). Most of the time, though, Wentz trusts his athleticism too much and it often gets him, and his team, into trouble (see the intentional grounding seconds later).
At the end of the day, Wentz isn’t cut out to play behind this offensive line. While an athletic quarterback who can shake off rushers and make throws on run, it’s not outlandish to think Heinicke is better suited for this version of Washington’s offense; one that struggles to protect its QB and needs someone who can scramble.
Despite having limited experience under center in the NFL, Heinicke’s pocket awareness is infinitely better relative to Wentz. His arm may pale in comparison, but he knows the offense like the back of his hand and led Washington to seven wins in 2021 despite the roster being decimated by injuries.
The question the Commanders have to ask themselves is if they’re willing to live with Heinicke being unable to make all the throws (mostly downfield ones) in favor of adding more balance to the offense. Right now, Washington is finding a lot of success in the running game, but the aerial attack has been rendered useless.
Couldn’t hurt to see if Heinicke can fare any better than Wentz behind this offensive line. In the last two games, the unrelenting pressure was overwhelming for Wentz and brought out his biggest flaws as a quarterback.
What do you think, Commanders fans? Should Heinicke relieve Wentz?