Sources: Zach Wilson hesitant to resume starting role as Jets consider QB change

By Zack Rosenblatt, Dianna Russini and Jeff Howe

The New York Jets are considering another quarterback change, but their preferred option is hesitant to reclaim the role. Sources within the team revealed on Monday that the Jets are leaning towards reinstating Zach Wilson as the starter, but Wilson himself is reluctant to step back into the position.

Jets coach Robert Saleh stated in his weekly Monday news conference that a decision had not been made regarding the starting quarterback for Week 14 against the Houston Texans. However, Saleh indicated that Wilson expressed his desire to play when they met earlier in the day. If officially asked by the Jets (4-8) to start, Wilson would agree, according to a source familiar with his thinking.

Although Aaron Rodgers attempted to persuade Wilson to retake the starting role, the rookie quarterback remained wary due to concerns about potential injury risks, as per team sources.

In the 2021 NFL Draft, Wilson was selected as the second overall pick and returned as the Jets’ starting quarterback after Rodgers’ early injury in the Week 1 game. However, the offense continued to struggle, leading to Tim Boyle taking over as the starter in Week 12 against the Miami Dolphins.

Despite Boyle’s efforts, the offense still struggled, resulting in Trevor Siemian replacing him in the Week 13 game against the Atlanta Falcons. However, neither quarterback was able to turn the offense around, prompting a reconsideration of Wilson as the team’s starter for the remainder of the season.

The Jets have encountered challenges in establishing consistency with their offensive line, contributing to the struggles of their quarterbacks. Wilson, in particular, faced a high pressure rate among all qualifying quarterbacks, as reported by TruMedia.

After Wilson’s benching, Saleh expressed confidence in his development, acknowledging the team’s collective responsibility for the struggles. The original plan was for Wilson to sit and learn from Rodgers throughout the season, but unforeseen circumstances propelled him into action.

As for Wilson’s future, Saleh indicated that it would be addressed in the offseason as the team continues to grapple with their quarterback situation.

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(Photo: Sarah Stier / Getty Images)


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