Kade Wentz, the starting middle linebacker on San Marino High School’s varsity football team, said he’s “not really sure” of his family’s connection with Philadelphia Eagles star quarterback Carson Wentz.
“I’m not really sure,” Wentz said, who is soft-spoken off the field but an assassin on it. “I know that my great grandfather and his great grandfather are cousins.
“It’s really distant.”
Philadelphia is just over 2,700 miles from San Marino, but Kade and Carson share some common ground. The sparsely-populated state of North Dakota, where Kade’s father, Kevin, grew up and Carson attended college, at North Dakota State.
“I have been a fan of theirs all my life,” Kade said. “I was watching a game and I noticed he had the same last name. I asked my dad, who called his aunt. She did a little research and that is how I found out we are related.”
Originally a quarterback (and still the backup quarterback for the varsity football team), Kade wore jersey number 7 two years ago as a freshman. That option was eliminated last year when he was named to the varsity roster.
“It was retired,” Kade explained. “Carson Glazier’s #7 was retired so I had to find something else. The number 11 was a natural. I thought ‘it looks good on Carson Wentz, why not on me?’”
Though a lifelong fan of the Minnesota Vikings, Kade watches the Eagles on television every week to see how “Cousin Carson” (our term) is faring. Kade even ordered an Eagles t-shirt with their family name just after Carson Wentz was drafted and another Eagles quarterback was traded. Kade even draws inspiration from Carson’s style of play.
“I like his toughness,” said Kade. “He is not afraid to take a hit. I admire that about him.”
There is a lot to admire about Kade, too, who has crossed over to the other side of the line of scrimmage and made a name for himself, pun intended.
“Kade is an excellent player,” said head football Coach Mike Hobbie. “He is one of the best middle linebackers we have had since I have been here and he just gets better all the time. He has good size by our standards and has outstanding athletic ability. Kade is a sideline-to-sideline kind of guy and one of our tougher kids.”
Hobbie laughed and said “that is different” when asked about the phenomenon of his starting middle linebacker serving as backup quarterback. It might prove quite the conundrum next season.
“What are we going to do next year if Kade is our best quarterback and is also our middle linebacker,” Hobbie said with a chuckle, seemingly glad that he doesn’t have to make the decision for several months.
Kade is the son of Vivian and Kevin Wentz. Kade’s older sister, Kelsey, was a star water polo player for the Lady Titans, graduating in 2013. She is currently a senior at San Diego State University.
Kade told The Tribune he has yet to reach out to Carson. And who knows. Some day, Carson might be asking for Kade’s autograph.