Carson Wentz should really stop throwing shovel passes

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You could blame it on the rain, as Milli Vanilli once sang, or you could say that Carson Wentz’s second interception of the 2021 season came from a rogue gene Wentz had always had. When he’s been successful, as he has for the most part this season with the Colts, it’ll still show up once in a while. And when he turns into an absolute disaster, as he did for the Eagles in 2020 before he was benched for performance issues and traded out of town, the bug becomes the feature.

What we know is that at the start of the second quarter in the Colts’ Sunday night game against the 49ers in a torrential downpour at Levi’s Stadium, Wentz did this with a shovel pass as he tried to avoid pressure from San Francisco edge-rusher Nick Bosa.

Right into the hands of 49ers linebacker Azeez Al-Shaair, and that was that for the Colts’ red zone drive.

It’s not the first time Wentz has ended a Colts red zone opportunity this season by going Full Metal Favre. In Week 2 against the Rams, he tried this heave to tight end Jack Doyle, and Rams linebacker Troy Reeder was right on the spot.

“What happened on the shovel pass was Aaron Donald made a great play,” Colts head coach Frank Reich said of that Week 2 interception. “He gets penetration and Jack is supposed to come behind the line of scrimmage and be able to go past Aaron Donald and then be one-on-one, catch a little shovel pass and have the safety come down. It’s going to be a blow up at the end zone and we have a big tight end and he’s going to get in the end zone. Aaron Donald got penetration, knocked Jack off his path, right at the time Carson was letting it go. You’re reading the defensive end, it’s a shovel pass. It’s got a throw to the back in the flat available if the end comes down. You throw it to the back in the flat. If the end feathers it and plays it soft, you shovel it to Jack. It was coming up, I have to watch the film, but I think it was coming up just like it was supposed to come up. Except, Aaron Donald made a great play.”

Well, Aaron Donald making a great play comes as no surprise. Nor does Nick Bosa making a great play. Nor, unfortunately, does Carson Wentz throwing picks on shovel passes. He has just two interceptions this season — at least as of that play — and both were on ill-advised shovel passes.

So, maybe let’s not do that anymore, guys.