The Jets and their second overall pick from 2021 are at a crossroads. Following Robert Saleh’s announcement that Zach Wilson will be benched in New York’s Week 12 contest, all eyes turn to the future of the former BYU standout.
It’s been a disappointing first two seasons for Wilson. The Jets’ prized draft pick from 2021 has played in 20 games through two seasons, has yet to throw over 10 touchdown passes for an entire year and has a league low QBR.
A major concern though has come from off the field antics. Following the team’s 10-3 loss to New England on Sunday, Wilson deflected blame in the loss. The comments made had reportedly frustrated members of the defense.
So a former top pick that was considered a savior for a starving franchise has now been benched. Where does Wilson and the Jets go from here? According to the quarterback, it’s time for internal reflection.
“This is going to be a good opportunity, a humbling opportunity, for me to put my head down and work harder.” Wilson told reporters Wednesday afternoon.
Some players in the NFL haven’t taken a career upheaval like a demotion in stride. Wilson, in front of the media, appears to be different. Reflecting on the first 20 games he played in, it’s clear he wasn’t producing like a top player.
“I wouldn’t say necessarily surprise because I haven’t been doing my job. Of course I would like to not agree with the decision and everything, but it comes down to I have to play better.”
For the Jets as an overall coaching staff, the team is looking for their quarterback to get back to his roos.
“The young man needs a reset…his decision making has been fine, practice habits, all of that has been fine, but there are some basic fundamental things that have gotten really out of wack for him and this is a chance for him to sit back and focus on those things.” head coach Robert Saleh told reporters.
Getting back to the fundamentals will be a key point to the growth of Wilson away from the pressures of playing ever Sunday. While New York has maintained their belief that Wilson is still their quarterback of the future, the outlook of a potential benching like this is usually a sign of a team looking for other options.
Wilson’s first test was dealing with a tough media on Wednesday afternoon. It’s clear the quarterback has passed this initial test. The question will now come down to how quickly the BYU product can improve as a quarterback while helping the Jets try and get to the postseason for the first time since 2010.
The Jets future plans at quarterback will very much hinge on that.
For more New York Jets news, turn to AMNY.com