Photo by Joe Kerlin
Carson Wentz was lucky enough to have members of his immediate family along with him for the ride in Chicago. He had his mom, Cathy, around his arm at the red carpet and his father, Doug, with him in the green room. His brother, Zach, Zach’s wife, and his grandmother, Beverly, also accompanied him. We caught up with Zach and Beverly after they returned from Chicago.
What was Chicago like for the family?
Beverly: “Definitely surreal. Never in my life did I think I would experience something like that and I have never watched a draft before for any sport because I had no reason to.”
Zach: “It all happened so fast down there. We were busy, and it felt like we were doing stuff all the time, and before you know it, his name was called and he was picked and we were down in the green room with him. It was all a whirlwind, but it was an experience our family obviously won’t forget.”
What was all the attention toward Carson like for you guys?
Zach: “Wherever we went, there were people whispering toward each other or pointing. People start to recognize his face in a variety of different areas, and it’s certainly different because we expect that in the state of North Dakota at this point. Even when you start getting to bigger markets such as that, even people there are matching the face to the name and understand who he is.”
Did some of the attention spill over to you guys, the family?
Beverly: “I did do one interview in Chicago and I didn’t even know what that was. I think that’s something they’re putting together to give to Carson. I’m not sure who it was that did that. They made an appointment with Cathy, so we all went up there. His dad’s family was there, and then we came and they took us into this room. Cathy was interviewed first, and then they asked if I would. I agreed.”
Zach: “The craziest thing was there were three or four people in Chicago who thought I was Carson a couple times who wanted my autograph or a picture with me.”
Much is made about the green room. How was it back there?
Zach: “It was full back there for sure. We were very thankful that we got enough tickets for our family for as many as we needed back there. We were all just trying to soak it up and enjoy it. We probably got back in the green room about a half hour before the draft started, and after about 15 minutes we were out of there. We tried to soak it up as best we could and really enjoy the moment and reminisce about the moments that led up to this.”Beverly: “By then, you are expecting it. After the Rams chose Goff, the word was pretty much the Eagles are going to take Carson. So you anticipate it happening.”
Beverly: “By then, you are expecting it. After the Rams chose Goff, the word was pretty much the Eagles are going to take Carson. So you anticipate it happening.”
Is the city of Philadelphia ready for the Wentz brothers?
Beverly: “Yes, and I don’t know if I like that (laughs). It’s very good for Carson to have Zach there. Those two boys are so close. They’re different. One is more laid back, and, of course, Carson is more active and hyper. They are the best of friends.”
Zach: “My wife and I will move probably at the end of June. Carson will get a place, and then we’ll start looking at places somewhere around where he buys a place.”
Zach, when did it hit you that your brother is going to play in the NFL?
Zach: “My wife and I, I think when he walked across the stage that was a moment and when my wife and I were with Carson and we landed in Philadelphia and then we walked out of the terminal, there were 15 to 20 fans and media members waiting there for a variety of different reasons. It hits you that this is surreal. His life is going to change. He’s now the face of an entire city plus the whole state of North Dakota.”
Beverly, can we expect you at more Bison football games this fall?
Beverly: “I’ll be there. I’ll go to all the home games. I’ve got my own Bison family, the people I’ve been sitting by for four years. They told me I have to keep coming (laughs). I said, ‘I’ll do it one year at a time.’ Make sure I can still drive back and forth for these type of things. I’ve been a Bison fan forever. My husband, who died from cancer at the age of 46, was an NDSU grad in Pharmacy in 1955. We went back for homecoming. I’ve been a Bison fan since then. Zach was there so we followed him there and everything. I’m a Bison through and through.”