If that trade comes to fruition, Zach Wilson will go from a No. 2 pick to No. 2 on the quarterback depth chart. Rich Cimini of ESPN revealed on April 23 something “that should help soften the blow of being demoted.”
“Here’s one positive: Wilson, through communication with Rodgers, received a glowing report on new offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett.”
Aaron Rodgers & Zach Wilson Have Been Talking Amid Jets-Packers Trade Rumors
Rodgers has reached out to Wilson this offseason amid rumors about their becoming teammates in New York, according to Brian Costello of The New York Post.
“[The Jets] think Aaron Rodgers will be good for Zach [Wilson], there’s a relationship there,” Costello said on the March 24 episode of “The Crew” podcast. “They’ve developed a friendship where they text back and forth. I’ve heard there have been some recent discussions between the two of them.”
A-Rod also sang the praise of Hackett in those discussions, Cimini wrote.
Hackett was in Green Bay from 2019 through 2021, a three-year span during which Rodgers was back-to-back league MVP.
Here were his combined statistical achievements from 2020 through 2021: 85 passing touchdowns to 9 interceptions, 8,414 passing yards and a 69.8 completion percentage
I’ve spoken to a few former players who have worked with Hackett and said he makes things fun and that he’s a player’s coach who can get the best out of you.
Even though Hackett didn’t last a full season with the Denver Broncos last season, Hackett has a history of succeeding with a variety of quarterbacks, developing young talent and putting them in a position to succeed.
“He checks every box of what we were looking for,” Jets head coach Robert Saleh said in January.
Zach Wilson Could Benefit From Trade
A trade for Rodgers could benefit Wilson, who was taken with the No. 2 overall pick in 2021 but has not panned out as the Jets’ starting quarterback.
“It’s clear at this point that Wilson was not able to suit up on Day 1 and be a capable starting quarterback in the NFL,” CBS Sports’ Tyler Sullivan wrote on April 24. “With Rodgers coming in town, Wilson would have the opportunity to sit back and truly go through the “reset” that head coach Robert Saleh admitted the QB needed at various points last season.”
Wilson, who will be 24 in August, has been open publicly that he idolized Rodgers growing up and has studied his film to attempt to add some of Rodgers’ game to his own. During the summer of 2021, they hung out during the Jets-Packers joint practice and exchanged pleasantries.
There is a chance that Rodgers, 39, lasts only one season in New York if he’s traded here. If that were to happen, Wilson would have a chance to breathe in 2023 before getting thrown back into the fire in 2024.
Wilson showed up to the beginning of voluntary workouts and, according to Cimini, has kept a low profile during the offseason. “He hasn’t talked to the media since the end of the season,” Cimini wrote. “It will be interesting to hear what he has to say now.”