Zach Wilson has a golden chance of redemption for the NY Jets
When the NY Jets selected quarterback Zach Wilson in the 2021 NFL Draft, it was another step in the right direction. In dire need of a future franchise quarterback, it made sense at the time but as usual, when it comes to the Jets, they dropped the ball on Wilson's overall development, progression, and support.
Make no mistake about it, the Jets should have sat Wilson for at least a month or two back in 2021 or even considered sitting him the entire season just so he can get acclimated to life in the pros. Yeah, he's an accomplished college quarterback out of Brigham Young and on paper, looked to be the real deal. The only issue is, he simply wasn't ready to start for a pro football team in his rookie season.
Since the Jets chose to throw him to the wolves so soon, he looked like a deer in headlights. He had a few glimpses of brilliance but overall, looked completely lost and confused for the most part. Rushing passes, interceptions, wrong positioning, everything and anything went wrong and it's easy to see why it completely shattered his confidence as a football player. Frustration set in and it's been one huge mess.
Zach Wilson has a golden chance of redemption with the NY Jets
Fast forward two seasons later and even though many are willing to move on from Wilson once and for all, times have undoubtedly changed. The Jets made a blockbuster trade this offseason to acquire future Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback Aaron Rodgers. This immediately benefits Wilson like you wouldn't believe.
Not only can Wilson finally be in a backup role but he can learn from one of the greatest quarterbacks to ever do it. Rodgers is a Super Bowl-winning quarterback with a plethora of NFL Playoff experience and will be a valuable resource for Wilson in 2023 and hopefully beyond.
Wilson can now be on the sidelines as he should have been in 2021, learn from a smart veteran quarterback ahead of him on the depth chart, and finally absorb everything he needs to be successful in the future. In a perfect situation, Rodgers can stick around with the Jets for at least two full seasons and then hand the keys over to Wilson who can now take two years to develop the right way.
In the grand scheme of things, there is still hope for Wilson. Yes, he's had some pretty terrible early years so far with the Jets but his story is far from over. Hopefully, if he can get at least a full year or two learning from Rodgers, he'll be ready when his number is called in the future to give it one last shot to be "the guy" for the Jets for many years to come.
It's a golden chance of redemption for Wilson to take a step back to properly develop in a way that benefits himself as a person, quarterback, and leader. He's had some issues in all three aspects so far with the Jets but the best thing about time is that it heals all. Not many players get second chances like this with the same franchise but Wilson at least deserves that due to how poorly the Jets handled his first two years with the franchise.
If Wilson can take a year or two off from starting and learn from the sidelines so he can come back like a whole new player in 2024, 2025, or even 2026, he might be the future franchise quarterback the Jets have been waiting decades for. If not, at least the Jets tried to better his situation by bringing Rodgers into the organization to mentor and help him grow the right way. Only time will tell where he'll be mentally and physically over the next few years but it will be interesting to see if Rodgers can do his part to unlock Wilson's overall potential.