When the New York Jets first drafted wide receiver Garrett Wilson out of Ohio State, Jets fans pictured a Wilson-to-Wilson connection for years to come.
Unfortunately, through their first seven starts together, this combination had been anything but. Quarterback Zach Wilson couldn’t seem to get on the same page as the dynamic rookie playmaker during his initial stint as the starter and that became curious after the WR thrived with both Mike White and Joe Flacco.
Despite the loss in Week 15, the Wilson-to-Wilson duo finally linked up for 98 yards, but the joint effort didn’t come without its ups and downs. Afterward, Garrett Wilson opened up about Zach Wilson’s performance versus the Detroit Lions.
Jets WR Garrett Wilson Chats Zach Wilson After Lions Week
During his postgame press conference, the first-year wideout was asked about Zach Wilson’s roller-coaster ride of a return at quarterback. Although there were one or two moments of frustration on the field, Garrett Wilson did back his signal-caller in front of the NYC media.
“Yeah, that boy battled,” Garrett Wilson responded without hesitation. “Anytime you come into a game and see the speed of [the] game and knowing you’re getting man coverage and — like you said, you haven’t been in that position in three weeks, it’s going to be tough on you. I thought he handled it really well, man. He showed a lot of perseverance, especially at the end of the game making some of the throws he did and standing in there, [he] gave us a chance to win the game.”
“That’s all you can ask for,” the rookie concluded, adding that “all of us feel like we left some plays out there [on the field].”
There’s no telling what the future holds at quarterback for the Jets, but you can bet that Garrett Wilson will be heavily involved in it. If Zach Wilson wants to be the guy in New York, it’d be in his best interest to try and iron out any kinks in his chemistry with the Jets’ budding star.
Zach Wilson Gets Accountable After Week 15
One of the main reasons Zach Wilson was benched was his lack of accountability after the road loss to the New England Patriots. After Week 15, the young football player did learn from that mistake even if he repeated a few others during the contest.
“I gotta be more consistent,” was the theme from Zach Wilson’s presser. He also complimented offensive coordinator Mike LaFleur, kicker Greg Zuerlein, his entire defense, and the aforementioned Garrett Wilson despite opportunities from the media to shift blame onto others.
Reporters even questioned the quarterback on head coach Robert Saleh’s decision to save his timeouts on the final fourth quarter drive — a choice that was heavily criticized after the loss. Zach Wilson sidestepped that one too, noting that his “job” is to keep the offense “rolling until someone tells me the clock is stopped.”
Statistically speaking, the former No. 2 overall pick had one of the best starts of his career with 317 passing yards and two touchdowns (one interception, 89.8 passer rating), but as we know, stats don’t always tell the full story. Zach Wilson may be remembered more fondly for a 154-yard passing victory against Buffalo or a fourth quarter comeback in Pittsburgh.
If the Jets defense slams the door on the Lions, maybe fans remember this game differently too, but what ifs mean nothing in the NFL. For better or for worse, Zach Wilson is starting to understand that.
When asked if he thinks he played well enough to get another start, the youngster replied “no,” adding quickly that “I think that’s not up to me.”
“There was good, there was bad, but essentially there was a lot to learn from,” Zach Wilson admitted. “I’ve got a lot of plays I want back and so, until I can correct those and make the easy [plays], I gotta keep learning and trying to improve.”