The Jets are eyeing a quarterback with the No. 2 overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. And the player who’s most caught their attention appears to be Wilson.
General manager Joe Douglas, head coach Robert Saleh, and offensive coordinator Mike LaFleur were the three individuals the Jets sent to evaluate Wilson. Otherwise known as the three most important members of the organization when it comes to evaluating a quarterback.
But Wilson’s pro day was far from the only development on Friday that pointed to the Jets’ decision. In fact, it was probably the least significant of the day’s major events.
Friday’s trades indicate that the NY Jets are eyeing Zach Wilson
The NFL world experienced a major shakeup on Friday when the San Francisco 49ers traded up to the No. 3 overall pick, allowing the Miami Dolphins to move back to 12th overall.
However, they weren’t there for long as the first trade corresponded with another one that saw them move back up to sixth overall in a deal with the Philadelphia Eagles.
The Eagles were reportedly very high on Wilson, but their trade back indicates that they didn’t believe they were going to be able to land him.
If Philadelphia though they had a chance at trading up to land Wilson, they would have tried. And perhaps they did. Instead, it became abundantly clear that they weren’t going to be able to.
Why is that? For the same reason that the 49ers felt the need to move up to No. 3.
It was reported that the 49ers didn’t even bother reaching out to the Jets to inquire about a trade up. Instead, they had conversations with the Miami Dolphins, Atlanta Falcons, and Cincinnati Bengals who picked third, fourth, and fifth respectively.
Why would the 49ers not reach out to the Jets if the plan was to trade up? The answer seems pretty clear.
The Jets know what they’re going to do with the No. 2 pick. And all signs point to Zach Wilson being the guy they’re targeting.
Numerous front-office members around the league seem to be in agreeance about this too. The Athletic’s Dane Brugler was told that “the draft starts” with the third pick and that “Wilson is going second overall.”
NFL Network’s Mike Silver reported that “the belief in most buildings is that Lawrence and Wilson will go 1-2, to Jags and Jets.”
It’s important to consider relationships. Joe Douglas is extremely close to Eagles’ general manager Howie Roseman. You’d figure that Roseman would have a good idea what the Jets’ plan is for the No. 2 pick if he decided to bail on the possibility of trading up for Wilson.
The same is true for the 49ers — a coaching staff that’s closer to the Jets than any other staff in the league. They know exactly what the Jets plan to do, which is why they knew they had to trade up to No. 3 to get the guy they want.
And it’s why they knew they couldn’t trade up to No. 2.
The writing has seemingly been on the wall for quite some time now. But the draft picture is now as clear as it’s been all offseason, at least for the Jets.
Zach Wilson should be the odds-on favorite to be the Jets’ starting quarterback in 2021.