Eagles QB Carson Wentz’s ‘dad bod’ just one sign of his maturity

PHILADELPHIA — The Eagles‘ offensive line is having fun with the Carson Wentz “dad bod” bit.

The Philadelphia quarterback is listed at 6-foot-5 and 237 pounds. But he entered training camp carrying around 250 pounds, he said, as the result of going hard in his home gym over the past few months. And he is free of injury and restrictions this offseason for the first time in three years.

Wentz also became a first-time father in April, giving center Jason Kelce and tackle Lane Johnson the perfect vehicle to frame the physical change.

“He’s got some of that dad bod weight going on, so he looks good,” Johnson said. Kelce added that Wentz has “some dad weight going on,” which he is “sure will be very good for injury prevention” and said it looks more natural.

“I’ll take it. Hey, I’m a dad. Dad bod can mean a million different things,” Wentz said Monday, breaking into a smile. “I told Kelce, he could have said ‘dad strength.’ But dad bod’s fine. Whatever we want to call it.”

The whole vibe fits when looking at where Wentz is in the arc of his career. He is 27 and in the early stages of his prime, health allowing, and he doesn’t have all the answers himself, yet. But Wentz looks around and sees a young group of skill position players who need him to guide them. There are three rookie receivers to bring up to speed and little time to do it, including 2020 first-round pick Jalen Reagor, who figures to be a big part of the Eagles’ offense as a dynamic playmaker.

The situation has helped Wentz take the next step in his development as a leader.

“I’ve been thoroughly impressed,” Eagles coach Doug Pederson said. “He has come into camp in tremendous shape. He’s the leader of our football team. He is coaching up the young players, which is great to see.”

Wentz has been busy building these receivers up. No one will ever confuse Reagor for someone who lacks confidence, but he is getting an extra boost courtesy of Wentz’s lofty comparisons.

“We watch clips of our routes and he’s just like, ‘You’re explosive like Julio [Jones]. You can run fast and jump high, so he compares me to a lot of receivers,” Reagor said. “He’s just saying, ‘There’s certain routes certain people can’t run. You can run those routes.’ So he’s putting me up there, he’s putting it all on me, so I’m willing to get better every day and work at it.

“I love Carson. That’s my dude. I look forward to a long, long career with him.”

At the first day of padded practices on Monday, Wentz opened team drills by firing one laser, and then another, down the middle for Reagor, who caught the football in stride and darted upfield.

The Eagles’ offense has been far from perfect so far in camp. It struggled some on Tuesday. At one point, after Wentz was forced to throw the ball away during goal-line drills, he threw his helmet to the ground in frustration. But the group is growing thanks in part to its suddenly veteran leader in Wentz.

“We’ve got a handful of younger guys, especially at the receiver position, and I’m just trying to not only get better personally but to make everyone around me better,” Wentz said. “That’s more than just physical things on the field. That’s the mental side of things, understanding the whys behind how we do things or run certain routes or certain concepts and just trying to make sure that everyone is on the same page so they can think and react and respond the same way I see things certain plays and certain things.”