It's been a rollercoaster of a season for NY Jets quarterback Zach Wilson. While the Jets roster, as a whole, has overachieved, Wilson has sputtered in his second year in the NFL.
The former No. 2 overall pick suffered a knee injury on the very first drive of the team's first preseason game and would go on to miss the opening three weeks of the season. His return was met with enthusiasm as Wilson helped lead the Jets to a triumphant victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Since then, however, it hasn't exactly been smooth sailing for the former BYU star. Wilson was soon benched in favor of Mike White before returning to the starting lineup this past Sunday following an injury to his successor.
With White sidelined for at least one more game, Wilson will have another opportunity to prove his worth to the same team that eyed him as their franchise savior less than two years ago.
Zach Wilson has one final (?) opportunity to prove himself to the NY Jets
The Jets' quarterback situation is very much a week-by-week decision at this point. Wilson is well aware that he isn't guaranteed anything anymore — the Jets made that abundantly clear when they benched him after just 20 career starts.
The Jets are going to start the quarterback who they believe gives them the best chance to win. That player was White prior to his injury, but there's no guarantee that remains the case.
Wilson returned in Week 15 and, while he showed signs of improvement from his pre-benching self, the inconsistencies and inaccuracies were still present in his game.
With White set to return from injury as soon as Week 17 against the Seattle Seahawks, this could realistically be Wilson's final chance to prove that he deserves another shot with the Jets.
If he falters, there's a realistic possibility that Wilson doesn't start another game with the Jets. If he thrives, there's a chance the Jets could stick with Wilson even once White returns.
It's now or never for the former top prospect. Wilson will take the field under immense scrutiny with a national audience watching. There is no tomorrow for Wilson (or likely the Jets, for that matter) without a win tonight.
Zach Wilson will have the opportunity to prove to himself, the Jets, and the NFL world that he belongs in both the short-term and long-term quarterback picture.
And in reality, an opportunity is all you can ever ask for in the NFL.