NFL

Carson Wentz Gets Emotional Farewell From Diehard Eagles Fan

While many Philadelphia Eagles fans were happy to see the team get a couple of draft picks for their high-priced backup quarterback Carson Wentz, one fan was distraught. Giovanni Hamilton, a 13-year-old diehard Eagles fan with a rare genetic disorder was broken up by the news. Hamilton was tearful in a video posted on social media when he said goodbye to Wentz, saying, “you’re still my hero.”

Carson Wentz traded to the Indianapolis Colts

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Carson Wentz was supposed to be the Philadelphia Eagles quarterback of the future. Drafted with the second overall pick in 2016, Wentz did the bulk of the work during the 2017 season that propelled the Eagles to a Super Bowl title. He went 11-2 in the 13 games he started before suffering a season-ending ACL injury in a Week 14 game against the Los Angeles Rams.

Wentz was replaced by Nick Foles, who led the Eagles to a victory over the New England Patriots in Super Bowl 52. It was the franchise’s first Super Bowl title in history. Wentz bounced back in 2018, starting 11 games, and then he went 9-7 in 2019.Prior to the 2019 season, Wentz signed a four-year extension worth $128 million.

Wentz struggled in 2020, going 3-8-1 in his 12 starts. The Eagles benched Wentz in favor of Jalen Hurts, selected in the second round of the 2020 NFL draft. This week, Wentz was traded to the Indianapolis Colts for 2021 third-round pick and a conditional second-round pick in 2022, according to Adam Schefter.

Wentz and Giovanni Hamilton developed a relationship in 2019

Back in training camp in 2019, Giovanni Hamilton and Carson Wentz developed a bond. Hamilton has a rare genetic condition called Schwartz-Jampel Syndrome. According to ESPN, Hamilton’s mother, Shannon, equated the condition to a combination of muscular dystrophy and dwarfism. He’s endured numerous surgeries, including jaw distraction in 2019. It was a year after Wentz returned from surgery on his ACL.

“We actually lengthened (his jaw) an inch, and we had to turn pins every day in order to do that in moving him one millimeter a day,” Shannon said, according to ESPN. “It was really painful and just awful. But he told me, he said, ‘Mom, I’m going to be strong like Carson. Look at how he’s doing with his knee. Look at how he’s doing with his back.’ And it just meant everything for him to finally meet Carson. He just choked up. He couldn’t get the words out. So of course I lost it.”

Hamilton was at training camp in his Wentz jersey and his green mohawk, showing support of the Eagles. He was there in his wheelchair on the sidelines through a foundation called Bianca’s Kids.

Hamilton tearful in saying goodbye to Wentz

In a Twitter video posted by Giovanni Hamilton, a Philadelphia Eagles and Carson Wentz superfan, the 13-year-old said “this hurts” as he spoke of Wentz no longer being a member of the Eagles. Hamilton’s right arm was in a sling after a recent surgery and he was choked up because he wasn’t able to put on Wentz’s jersey.

“You’re still my hero and you always will be,” Hamilton said tearfully before turning and pointing to a picture on the wall of he and Wentz meeting for the first time in 2019. “That moment is what matters.”

Hamilton then gave an encouraging message to the fans of his new team, the Indianapolis Colts. “Colts fans, you really have a real one and he’s gonna do you some good. I know what he’s capable of. I know what he’s capable of with (Colts coach) Frank Reich. You guys are gonna go off next season. Carson, I’m always gonna be a fan of you forever. Thank you for what you’ve done.”