Carson Wentz is back on the open market.
On Monday, the Commanders of Washington officially released the beleaguered quarterback after one season.
The long-awaited move saves Washington $26.176 million in salary cap space this offseason. Wentz had two years left on his contract but no guaranteed money. He can sign with any team before the start of free agency, which begins on March 15.
Just 11 months ago, the Commanders traded two third-round picks and traded second-round picks in the 2022 draft to acquire Wentz from the Colts. The former Pro Bowler will now look for his fourth NFL home in as many seasons.
Wentz and the Chiefs’ offense struggled from the start in 2022, and things got worse when the 30-year-old veteran broke a finger on his throwing hand in a Week 6 win over Chicago that left him sidelined for the next eight games.
He was ineffective in returning to action, which landed him last on the depth chart for the Commanders by the end of the regular season.
Wentz, the second overall pick in 2016, was traded to Philadelphia in the 2021 offseason after losing his job to Jalen Hurts. He spent one season as the Colts’ starter before being shipped to Washington, which went 2−5 in Wentz’s seven starts and 8-8-1 overall last season, good for last in the NFC East.
In fact, the Commanders were the only team in the NFC East not to make the postseason. Midway through the campaign, head coach Ron Rivera was memorably blunt and succinct in his assessment of why his team had fallen behind everyone else in the division: “quarterback.”
The commanders, of course, recently grounded highly respected Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy to take over for the embattled Scott Turner, who never had an offense higher than 20th in his three years in Washington. The first word from the Commanders this offseason is that 2022 fifth-round pick Sam Howell will be the starting quarterback next season.
The club also cut veteran Bobby McCain on Monday, who saves another $2.32 million in salary cap space and perhaps as much as $4.42 million if designated as a post-June 1 release.
The Chiefs had $8.3 million in cap space before Monday’s pitches, according to OverTheCap.com.
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