The Zach Wilson experience with the New York Jets has been a disaster through his first two seasons in the league. While quarterbacks from the 2021 NFL Draft class, like Trevor Lawrence and Justin Fields, have taken a huge boost in production, Wilson has shown not to be the current answer for the Jets.
After a rough, but manageable rookie season for Wilson in 2021, this 2022 NFL season was a chance for the Jets to see some development on the field from Wilson, but his off-the-field antics have been a indication of why he declined in his second season in the league.
Despite accounting for a 5-4 overall record as a starter, Wilson's play as a quarterback and as the Jets' leader caused more harm than good. Wilson accounted for a season QBR of 36.4, which is the 29th-best ranking ahead of only four other eligible quarterbacks in the league. It also didn't help Wilson that he didn't take responsibility for the Jets' lack of productivity on offense while the defense (which finished the 2022 season ranked fourth in the league in scoring defense) was balling out.
The Jets have a solid roster, especially on the defensive side of the ball, where they feel they can compete for a Super Bowl. The hole on their team is at the quarterback position, where Wilson is showing to be a bust, Joe Flacco is too old, and Mike White has shown not to be a full-time or temporary answer.
This off-season, the Jets have stated their intentions to get a veteran quarterback such as Aaron Rodgers, Derek Carr, or Jimmy Garoppolo, or make a trade for Lamar Jackson with the Baltimore Ravens. Head coach Robert Salah has stated they are not going to give up on Wilson and keep him on the roster.
At this point, the Jets are expected to go for a win-now quarterback to go along with their talented roster. One move that could be possible is for the Jets to trade for Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers this off-season especially after hiring his former offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett for the same position.
Regardless of going for Rodgers or another quarterback, Wilson has a high chance of remaining on the Jets. This continues the 84% likelihood of former first-round quarterbacks remaining with the team that drafted them. Take those valuable odds and use the BetMGM NY promo code (EMPIRENY ) to claim an offer of up to $1,000, to wager on Wilson to return to the Jets at +350.
It is very rare for first-round quarterbacks to not make it to the third year with the team that drafted them. Two of the most noticeable exceptions to this rule were former UCLA Bruins quarterback Josh Rosen with the Arizona Cardinals and former Texas A&M Aggies and Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel with the Cleveland Browns.
Rosen was selected by the Cardinals as the tenth overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft from UCLA. In his rookie season, Rosen threw for 11 touchdowns, 14 touchdowns, and a QBR of 24.1. The Cardinals traded him after only one season to the Miami Dolphins after securing the first overall pick in the 2019 Draft to get former Heisman Trophy winner in Oklahoma Sooners quarterback Kyler Murray.
Manziel was drafted by the Browns with the 22nd overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft. He had the dynamic athleticism and accuracy to be a starting-caliber quarterback in the NFL. Manziel's many off-the-field antics kept him from being a serviceable quarterback in the league and being labeled a bust. Manziel was out of the league two years after being drafted.
If the Jets go after a veteran quarterback, it would be a good opportunity for Wilson to grow mentally. It is clear that he doesn't have the mentality to control his ego and off-the-field antics to remain the starting quarterback for the Jets. It would be unlikely for the Jets to include Wilson in a trade package to Green Bay for Rodgers as they have a former first-round pick in Jordan Love or to Baltimore with them having Pro Bowl-selected quarterback Tyler Huntley on their roster.
Unlike Rosen and Manziel, Wilson will likely be given a second chance to develop into the reliable pro-ready player that the Jets drafted him to be.