Jets Have ‘Clear QB2’ Behind Zach Wilson: Report

Mike White, Joe Flacco

Getty Mike White (left) and Joe Flacco (right) are battling for the New York Jets backup quarterback job.

Ever since the New York Jets drafted Zach Wilson at No. 2 overall, it’s only natural that the fanbase has looked to him as the next potential “savior” of the franchise — right?

Not exactly. Of course, the majority of supporters do look to Wilson but there have been a few unusual divides over the past year and a half.

Last summer, there was the veteran quarterback camp that wanted the Jets to bring in a true backup that could start Week 1 while Wilson watched. This may have been a decent idea in hindsight but it never came to fruition until the rookie got injured.

That’s when the franchise reacquired Joe Flacco — Sam Darnold’s former QB2 — but it was also the beginning of Mike White fever. Having said all that, the quarterback conversation is never as straightforward as it seems at One Jets Drive, but it does appear a favorite is emerging in the battle to backup Wilson in 2022.

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Flacco Dubbed as ‘Clear QB2’

After the second day of Jets minicamp, veteran beat reporter Rich Cimini (ESPN) dropped some “observations” on Twitter and one involved the backup quarterback role.

“In case you’re wondering, Joe Flacco is the clear QB2,” Cimini wrote, “and he looked good.”

It was a brief comment, but a definitive one. Based on our research, it also seems accurate.

Flacco makes the Twitter highlights almost every day of practice while White has been up and down, with some positive mentions and some negative ones. There was the “Flacco bomb” to Braxton Berrios on June 1, or the growing camp connection with Denzel Mims.

The former Super Bowl MVP even threw a “laser” to tight end Kenny Yeboah toward the beginning of OTAs.

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Is There a Third-String Role in 2022?

Not only is Flacco outplaying White — you also must take the mentor factor into account. Although the grizzled gunslinger didn’t seem like he preferred to be a teacher when he first arrived, he quickly became one. So much so that after a second-half rebound, Wilson gave his “work dad” Flacco a glowing review.

So what does this all mean for White? — Who had become the man of the hour in New York after a historic Halloween victory. In all honesty, a bad training camp could spell the end of his Jets career.

It’s hard to see the Green & White rostering three quarterbacks in 2022 after the influx of talent this offseason. If White doesn’t win the QB2 job, it’ll be tough to justify keeping him and there’s no way he would clear waivers after 2021.

Someone would take a chance on that Cincinnati Bengals win alone, even if the rest was hit-or-miss. So, will the Jets attempt to trade White before it gets to that point?

They might, but it will come down to how well White plays this summer. If he showcases some more potential — but not enough to unseat Flacco — you could see a scenario where Joe Douglas flips him for a draft pick in August.

At the end of the day, White’s still an asset for the moment, but Wilson’s success could quickly make him an afterthought in this fast-paced league.

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Robert Whitcraft
Robert Whitcraft
14 days ago

Might happen, we will see, too early, need camp arms anyway. Good to have too many, than too few! Can’t wait! Just extend This season!

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