It was a shocking moment for the NY Jets when Mike White had to be treated on the sidelines at the end of his successful touchdown drive against the Indianapolis Colts. Then third-string quarterback Josh Johnson took over and did a very decent job with three touchdown passes.
Is there an open quarterback discussion now? Who should start in Week 10 at home against the Buffalo Bills? Josh Johnson? Mike White? Or Zach Wilson again after all?
For me, there can only be one answer: Mike White.
Mike White is cold as ice
Mike White has played seven quarters for the Jets so far. In those seven quarters, he has thrown five touchdown passes. Zach Wilson, on the other hand, has thrown just four touchdown passes in 22 quarters.
That alone shows that the 2018 fifth-round pick has learned a few things in his time on the practice squad and is prepared for the realities of the NFL. White doesn't let setbacks throw him off track.
The best example here is the two interceptions early in the game against the Cincinnati Bengals. Zach Wilson, on the other hand, is currently still letting such game events unsettle him. As a rookie, however, this is completely understandable.
Mike White's passing ability
White's completion percentage under pressure is also impressive. In his first outing for the Jets against the New England Patriots, it was 66.7 percent. In the game against the Cincinnati Bengals, it was 80 percent and 60 percent in the first quarter against the Indianapolis Colts.
Zach Wilson's best completion rate, on the other hand, was 37.5 percent. This was in Week 4 in the win against the Tennessee Titans.
Variability is the key to success
Since Wilson was sidelined, the Jets have thrown the ball much more frequently. In the first five weeks of the season, they averaged 34.2 pass attempts per game, but since Week 7, that number has risen to 47.7 pass attempts per game.
The passing touchdowns also show this. In the first five weeks, Jets receivers scored a whopping four combined touchdowns. Since Week 7, a remarkable eight passing touchdowns have been scored.
While the ball was run on 40.5 percent of all snaps in the first five weeks, it was only run on 31.1 percent from Week 7 on.
In addition, the ball is distributed more variably in the passing game under Mike White. As of Week 7, 33.1 percent of passes were thrown to running backs. In the first five weeks, that figure was only 21.3 percent.
Mike White makes the NY Jets offense better
With these stats, it should be clear that there is currently no alternative to Mike White. After all, White makes the Jets' offense more variable and just better overall.
Rookies like Michael Carter and Elijah Moore are blossoming and finding their place on the team and even carrying it. You should ride the bull while you can.
Have the Jets found their Tom Brady in Mike White? Maybe Mike White is no Tom Brady — but he's exactly the quarterback the Jets need in the current situation.
Wilson can relax behind White and get used to the realities of the NFL for the time being.