Doug Pederson: Mitchell Trubisky can be Wentz 2.0


Last year, Carson Wentz was a raw-but-promising rookie for a middling squad from Philadelphia. Today, he's an MVP candidate who leads the league in touchdown throws as one of the game's brightest young stars.

Eagles coach Doug Pederson has witnessed the transformation firsthand and believes the same can happen for Bears first-rounder Mitchell Trubisky.

"Oh, for sure, for sure," Pederson said ahead of Sunday's clash with the Bears, per ESPN's Jeff Dickerson. "We knew last year with Carson as a rookie that there were going to be growing pains and we were going to take some lumps. And also, listen, we just weren't very good as a football team last year, too, and didn't have the surrounding pieces around Carson. You kind of see in Mitch, you see the arm talent, you see the athleticism, the strength. You see good decisions, the accuracy. You see things that flash on tape that you go, 'OK, that's exactly the way Carson was a year ago.'"

They aren't the same player, but Trubisky -- like Wentz -- has shown flashes of brilliant play during his six pro starts. Chicago's coaching staff barely allowed him to throw the ball early on, but his past three outings have asked him to do more.

The rookie did his part last week, extending plays, finding downfield targets and using his legs to move the chains in a tight loss to Detroit that saw Trubisky put the team in position to win before Connor Barth botched a last-second, 46-yard field goal in a 27-24 loss.

"He successfully got us in position to succeed," offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains told the team's official website. "For him to take us down and get us into field-goal range was a big step in his growth."

Trubisky's coaches see weekly progress from the newbie, while Pederson sees evidence of that shared DNA with Wentz.

"That's always a positive when you have an athletic quarterback that you can use outside of the pocket, a big, physical guy like that, and you're seeing the flashes like we saw in Carson," Pederson said. "You continue to spend the time with him. You continue to develop. He gets a full offseason coming up, where like Carson you get time away but at the same time you can focus in on your offense and your skill set, and you'll see big strides from Year 1 to Year 2 in this kid."