What happens now that the Jets have benched Zach Wilson once again?
Though it would be unfair to place 100% of the blame on the young quarterback, the reality is something has got to give in New York and right now.
On Thursday night, the Jets and their quarterback took yet another blow which has left their playoff hopes in tatters and resulted in a second benching for the signal caller. Yet, perhaps the bigger problem now is the rookie’s confidence going forward.
Jets bench Zach Wilson again
It was not a good night for the Jets and their fans when they took a brutal 19-3 loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars on Thursday night. With the defeat, New York dropped to a 7-8 record and now have just an 8% chance of making the playoffs according to some reports. Yet, it’s got to be said that the main question on everybody’s mind at this point is: What do the Jets do about their quarterback. Following his performance on the night, quarterback Zach Wilson was benched for the second time in a month and suffice to say, things don’t look good for the immediate future.
On the night, Wilson completed 9 of 18 passes for 92 yards and one interception before being replaced by practice squad playmaker, Chris Streveler in the third quarter. To make matters worse for Wilson, Streveler’s introduction saw a notable difference in the offense’s play, thereby highlighting the fact that there have now been three quarterbacks to play better than the former No. 2 overall pick. Understandably, Jets head coach Robert Saleh was bombarded with questions postgame, about why that’s the case after and though he didn’t give a direct answer, he did say that it was confidence was the core problem. “Confidence is a big thing. As a human, you’re going to have adversity in your life, ups and downs. And obviously, he’s in it right now,” Saleh said, via the Jets’ official website. “Zach’s the kind of kid who’s going to keep his head down, work through it and try to find ways to improve. You’d be remiss saying there wasn’t a confidence thing there. We’ve got to help him out with that, too.”
Jets fans booed Zach Wilson
Is this the end of Zach Wilson? Will the Jets seek to trade the rookie? Valid questions, but on the other hand it doesn’t help the team or their quarterback when the fans turn on you. Sadly, that’s exactly what happened on Thursday night with fans booing Wilson on essentially every single incompletion - even on the plays when throwing the ball away was the correct decision. When you compare that to Streveler’s introduction, which was met with the kind of noise you expect in a Super Bowl, it definitely wasn’t a good look.
To his credit, Wilson acknowledged the fans frustration. “You don’t blame them,” Wilson said. “We have a very passionate fanbase and they’re here to watch us score touchdowns and we’re not scoring touchdowns, we’re not getting first downs, we’re not moving the ball, we obviously can’t throw the ball. So, of course they’re going to be frustrated.”
What do the Jets do now?
Officially, the Jets’ backup quarterback is Mike White who unfortunately suffered a rib injury which led to his inactivity for the last two weeks. Though Streveler did play well, the reality is Saleh gave no indication that he’d be starting in Week 17. “I’m not prepared for any of that. There’s a lot of medical stuff we’ve got to get figured out,” Saleh said. “We’ll go through this weekend and we’ll figure it all out on Monday.” Ultimately, barring any unforeseen circumstances at this point, White - if he’s cleared to play - will likely be the starter for the Jets’ next game which is against the Seattle Seahawks.
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