Jon Allen never lost confidence in Wentz after interceptions originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington
There was a moment during the Commanders’ 28-22 victory over Jacksonville on Sunday when it looked as though Carson Wentz might’ve let the game slip through his fingers.
After threading two touchdown passes, Wentz threw two interceptions on consecutive passes which allowed the Jaguars to take a 22-14 lead into the fourth quarter.
It was looking bleak. But Wentz showed why the Commanders felt comfortable picking up his near-$30 million contract moments later, when he tossed 49 and 24-yard touchdown passes to Terry McLaurin and Jahan Dotson, respectively, to ice the game.
Even during those tense moments, defensive tackle Jonathan Allen never lost confidence in his quarterback, partially because he had been on the wrong end of a good Carson Wentz in the past.
“Shoot, it took me three years to finally beat him. Three—no, four years,” Allen said on 106.7 The Fan on Monday. “So I’ve seen firsthand what Carson can do, so I got the utmost faith in him. I like to mess around with the quarterbacks before practice. Sometimes I kinda just go through what they go through, like for warmups, and I can’t imagine doing their job.”
Allen first faced his current QB1 nearly five years before their first game as teammates, back when Wentz was an Eagle, on Sept. 10, 2017. He threw for 307 yards, two touchdowns and one interception—Philadelphia won 30-17.
That’s how it would go for Allen and Washington facing Wentz for the next three years. Wentz would win his next four games against the Burgundy & Gold before finally beating Philadelphia 27-17 on Sept. 13, 2020.
“My biggest rule of thumb is, as long as guys are giving effort and trying their best, I will never get mad at a guy for what happens on the field,” Allen continued. “If you’re going out there and you’re giving it all you got and a bay play happens, alright cool. Hey, they’re in the NFL, too.”
Allen’s confidence in Wentz mirrors that of the team’s coaching staff and front office, which they’ve demonstrated essentially since Washington traded for the QB back in March. However, outside expectations were low on Wentz entering the 2022 season following two tumultuous seasons in Philadelphia and Indianapolis.
Wentz seemed to carry a bad reputation with him heading into this season, stemming in part from comments made by COlts owner Jim Irsay. It’s something Allen has dismissed in the past, though, and something Wentz himself has disregarded.
When asked again about Wentz’s alleged bad reputation, Allen kept a similar tone.
“Yeah, I have absolutely no idea where that comes from,” Allen said. “Sometimes it’s like the NFL can be like a high school. Like a high school, there’s so much drama and rumors and things that, quite frankly, aren’t true. I mean, I have no idea where that could come from.”
Allen joins a long list of Wentz’s teammates to back up their QB and has enjoyed the early returns of a 1-0 record to start the year. The Commanders will now try to start a season 2-0 for the first time since 2011 as they take on the Detroit Lions in Week 2.
Even with Wentz’s errors on Sunday, the silver lining seems to be that teammates alongside Allen haven’t wavered in their confidence.
“After he threw those two interceptions, [Wentz had a] quick memory, positive on the sideline, no pouting,” Allen said. “I think you can just look at the guys around him and see how they respond to him, and that tells you everything you need to know about his character.”