Carson Wentz could reportedly be cleared this week and still not start

The Philadelphia Eagles have been playing for a while now without the services of star quarterback Carson Wentz. Wentz tore his ACL last December and his backup, Nick Foles, came in and led the Eagles to a victory over the Patriots in the Super Bowl

Given their confidence in the backup, the Eagles have been content to let Wentz take it slow in his rehab. He already sat out the season-opening win against the Atlanta Falcons and he'll also be out for the team's Week 2 game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers

It's possible, however, that Wentz could finally be cleared for contact this coming week. But according to a report from NFL.com's Ian Rapoport, even being cleared for contact would not necessarily mean that Wentz would get back on the field right away. 

The third week of the season has always been a target and Philly's franchise quarterback has progressed in rehab enough to where that is quite possible.

However, that is not the end of the story. The question of when Wentz will actually get on the field to play a real football game is a complicated one.

The team is not in a rush for Wentz to play and there are several key, influential voices who have been preaching caution -- including owner Jeffrey Lurie.

According to Rapoport, it could still be a few weeks before Wentz actually suits up for the Eagles, even if he is taking contact in practices. "One source who knows Wentz well says the QB will be fighting for the chance to play and no one expects any different. But return-to-play situations take many voices to weigh in, from medical to the team to the player."

The Eagles are prioritizing Wentz's long-term health over the next decade-plus over winning any particular game in the short term, and that is likely a wise move. It could cause Wentz to become frustrated as he is kept on the sideline, but surely it's more important that he be around for a long time, than that he get to play against the Colts in Week 3. 

CBS Sports Writer

Jared Dubin is a New York lawyer and writer. He joined CBSSports.com in 2014 and has since spent far too much of his time watching film and working in spreadsheets. Full Bio

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