Sept. 7 (UPI) — The New York Jets will start Joe Flacco at quarterback for their season opener Sunday against the Baltimore Ravens, coach Robert Saleh said Wednesday at a news conference.
Saleh also told reporters that Zach Wilson, the team’s top quarterback, will not play for at least the next three weeks as he recovers from the right knee injury sustained in an Aug. 12 preseason game.
He said Wilson won’t return until at least Week 4, when the team faces the Pittsburgh Steelers on Oct. 2 in Pittsburgh.
“We are going to make sure that both mind and body are 110% and make sure we do right with him,” Saleh said of Wilson. “We feel like, talking to the doctors and everyone, that it’s going to be that Pittsburgh week.”
Saleh said that Wilson did not experience a setback in his recovery and “looks fantastic.”
The second-year quarterback underwent surgery on his right knee days after the injury. He is not walking with a limp and will not go on the reserve/injured list, which means he can be worked back into practice as his condition improves.
Wilson, the No. 2 overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, completed 55.6% of his throws for 2,334 yards, nine touchdowns and 11 interceptions in 13 starts last season.
Flacco, 37, completed 64.3% of his throws for 338 yards and three touchdowns in two appearances last season for the Jets. He completed 24 of 39 passes for 291 yards and two touchdowns in his lone start in 2021, a 24-17 loss to the Miami Dolphins on Nov. 21.
The Jets will host the Ravens in their season opener at 1 p.m. EDT Sunday at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J. The Ravens are 5.5-point favorites.