Most Thursdays I’ll tune into the coach's press conferences, not expecting to hear a lot.
You usually get a lot of, “This guy is doing great”, “We’re going to continue to grind to get better”, and “We’re just focused on this week's game”, but Thursday was a little different.
For the first time, someone within the Jets organization stood up in front of the press and admitted something that has become abundantly clear to everyone else, maybe Zach Wilson was not ready to start as a rookie
His full quote was:
“In hindsight, it probably would have benefitted just to sit back and learn a little bit and watch a veteran do it and just kind of grow in this league, kind of in the backseat watching and getting better in practice and getting better through scout team and all that. But again that wasn’t the course that we went. And from there, we’ve got to pick it up. We’ve got to pick up the scraps and get back to work”
If you look at how the Jets constructed their QB room ahead of his rookie season in 2021, there was never any doubt that he was going to start, the Jets really didn’t give him any solid competition.
Over the last two years, he’s been benched, booed, and banged up...but progress in his game has been limited if at all.
The Jets still believe in Zach Wilson and both coach Saleh and Mike LaFleur have committed to working with him to get the best out of him (what else can they say), but the results have been poor.
Through the first two years of his career, he’s been statistically the worst QB in terms of throwing under pressure. He’s completed just 55.2% of his passes full stop for 4022 yards, 15 touchdowns, and 18 interceptions.
Over the course of the 2022 season, we’ve seen Trevor Lawrence and Justin Fields take the next step in their development, but if you look at the stats Zach has stayed at the same level, despite an upgrade in talent around him.
The Jets were winning earlier in the season, but once Breece Hall and Alijah Vera-Tucker were lost for the season, the tide started to change. The offense moved better under Mike White, just like it did under Joe Flacco and Josh Johnson, but the results have not been there. The Jets are in danger of ending the 2022 season on a 6-game losing streak, and when that happens someone tends to lose their job.