A rowdy and trying week came to an end, with the Jets (finally) focusing on the football game against the Bears. But the week that saw them bench a player they thought was the start of their franchise left a lot to contend with.
Zach Wilson, who was only second last year, will be inactive today, as Mike White will start and Joe Flacco will be the backup.
How did the sophomore player take off the bench?
“Zach handled it like a pro,” head coach Robert Salih told NFL Network Insider Mike Garafolo late this week. “He challenged it like no one else. But at the same time, he had a good week of training.”
White, the former sharp backup, took first-team reps, while Flacco took backup reps. That left Wilson with two representatives from the scouting team, which Salih believed would benefit him.
“We put him behind that offensive line against our primary line of defense with the idea of getting the completions, connecting with the bottom half and working on the fundamentals,” Saleh said. “There’s an issue with accuracy. He knocked guys wide open. It’s not about decision making and ability. He’s doing the right reads. It’s more about fundamentals and footwork. He got a chance to work on that last week in practice, especially when things were falling apart.” in front of him.”
Nobody denies that Wilson is talented. The Jets hope to win him back for a start, though they have publicly refused to discuss that plan.
One source said of Wilson’s tenure, “It’s definitely not over yet.”
It’s been a rough week for Wilson, who said after a Week 11 loss to the Patriots that he didn’t feel like letting the defense down after scoring three points.
Wilson later addressed the team in an exclusive player session about his comments, stating that he did not mean them as much as they seemed. Several sources said that Wilson became emotional as he expressed remorse to his teammates for his comments and play.
Care has never been a problem. Wilson works insanely hard, and may work so hard that it becomes difficult to work, according to those who know him best. Last season, he struggled with simple throws, and struggled while doing so.
In short, he reached a mental point where simple throws became nearly impossible because he was thinking so much and looking so much. That came down in the spring (where it got better) and then a tough season.
It’s a fact that has influenced other New York athletes, such as baseball’s Chuck Knobloch and Maki Sasser. When Wilson lost quick kicks and couldn’t hit easy layups, maintaining drives became difficult.
There was no consistency in anything. Crime can not work. In the end, the Jets had no choice but to field White.
Wilson’s focus now is to clear his head, work on the basics and simply take a step back. The hope is that he can move on from here.
“Someone mentioned to me the other day Phil Sims was on and off the bench,” Saleh said. “(Bill) Parcells sits it down and comes back to win his job again and win the Super Bowl. There are stories like that everywhere. It’s just that quarterbacks don’t have a lot of time. Coaches don’t have a lot of time. He’s got tremendous arm talent, and he runs hard. He is a good decision maker but he is not where he needs to be or where he will be.”