On the cusp of reaching the playoffs, the Washington Commanders they are trusting Carson Wentz to make it happen.
Washington announced Wednesday that Wentz will take over as the starting quarterback in this week’s game against the Cleveland Browns, just days after he replaced Taylor Heinicke late in the fourth quarter of Sunday’s loss to the San Francisco 49ers.
Wentz came on after two crucial turnovers by Heinicke with nine minutes remaining in the game, going 12 of 16 for 123 yards and a touchdown, but it wasn’t enough to overcome the ninersthey won their eighth straight match.
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«We’re all competition. We’re not going to sugarcoat it,» Wentz said Sunday when asked what it would mean to be named the Week 17 starter.
«We all want to play. We all want to be out there. We all want to lead the charge. If we lose that at this position, in this league, we’re going to be out very quickly.»
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Wentz was sidelined with a broken finger in Week 6, but remained the backup despite being elevated from the disabled list on December 12.
Washington won five of its first six games without the veteran quarterback, but two straight losses certainly factored into Ron Rivera’s decision to start Wentz this week.
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The Commanders can clinch a playoff spot if they beat the Browns on Sunday and if the Detroit Lions, Seattle Seahawks and Green Bay Packers they all lose their respective games. They will also advance if they win the season.
«It’s good to still be in control of our destiny,» Wentz said Sunday. «Obviously getting out of a couple of sticky situations, up close, is tough, but at the same time being in control of our destiny means a lot.»