reich-wentz.jpg
Getty Images

Carson Wentz admitted the Philadelphia Eagles weren't in his future when he was benched by the team last December. Perhaps the Indianapolis Colts knew that at the time, too. 

Colts head coach Frank Reich, who already had a strong relationship with Wentz, admitted on the Colts docuseries With The Next Pick he envisioned getting Wentz before the 2020 season ended -- even though Philip Rivers was still the Colts' quarterback and Wentz was still under contract by the Eagles. 

"Honestly I thought towards the end of the year -- when things started going south there in Philadelphia -- I thought 'ah that'd probably never happen,'" Reich said. "We were open toward the possibility of talking about it (about a month prior to the trade). What's the right way to go about this? How deep is our conviction about him as our quarterback? 

"It was an up-and-down process, but I think we got to a spot where both teams got comfortable (on the trade)."

The Colts and Eagles agreed to a deal for Wentz in February (the deal became official when the new league year began in March). Philadelphia received a 2021 third-round pick and a conditional 2022 second-round pick for Wentz -- which can turn into a first-rounder if Wentz plays 75% of the snaps in 2021 or 70% of the snaps and the Colts make the playoffs. 

This deal was in the works for a while, as the Colts were already thinking about their plans for 2021 and beyond. 

"It's just a natural fit in so many ways," Reich said. "I know Carson and I know Indianapolis. This just feels right to me ... I just felt like he (Wentz) got it. The way that he looks at the game and plays the game. It's the way I think it should be played at that position. There are some guys that just love the process. They love practicing, working out, talking football, watching football, everything about it. Colts Nation is going to see it. You can just feel the energy he has for the game, his teammates, competing. My conviction is very deep." 

Reich and Wentz hit it off from when the Eagles selected him with the No. 2 overall pick in the 2016 NFL Draft, as the Colts head coach was one of the masterminds in making Wentz the MVP frontrunner in 2017 before Wentz tore his ACL in December of the Eagles' championship season. Wentz was crucial toward helping the Eagles win their first Super Bowl, getting Philadelphia to an 11-2 start and the NFC East title. He completed 60.2% of his passes for 3,296 yards, 33 touchdowns, seven interceptions, and a 101.9 passer rating in 13 games of that 2017 season, setting the franchise record for touchdown passes in a season. Despite missing the last three games, Wentz finished second in the league in touchdown passes. 

Since Reich left for the Indianapolis head coaching job, Wentz's career has gone south. Wentz has a golden opportunity to revive his career with the Colts, with a head coach he trusts. 

"I have the utmost respect for the man that he is, the friend that he's been to me as well," Wentz said. "He understands the game. He gets it from the mental side of things as a quarterback which ultimately allows me to trust him so much more. He was always the most encouraging person ... We just have this connection. We always talked about our values and different things, it's just natural.

"It's crazy circumstances that here we are working together again and I'm pretty fired up about it."