Zach Wilson finally broke Robert Saleh. Fortunately, for Saleh, not literally, when Wilson ran into him during the game. Saleh’s confidence in Wilson as starting quarterback for the New York Jets though, that is in pieces.
The Jets were not able to move the ball with any success against a struggling and injured Buffalo Bills’ defense during a 32-6 loss. As a team, the Jets passed for 92 yards, 18 of which came from a fake punt. Saleh pulled Wilson late in the third quarter for Tim Boyle. He attempted one less pass than Wilson and threw for almost 50 fewer yards. After the game, Saleh was asked who will be the Jets starting quarterback moving forward. He responded that the coaching staff needs to review the tape, and quickly, with a game in a few days, but no specific name was mentioned
“I’m not ready to answer any of those questions yet,” Saleh said.
His choices are Wilson, Boyle or Trevor Siemian. Saleh might as well write their names down on three slips of paper, put them in a box, shake it and give the job to whoever’s name he pulls out of it.
This starting quarterback problem for the Jets should not exist. Saleh made it clear last season that he does not believe in Wilson when he demoted him to third-string quarterback. Yes, attitude problems were a part of that, but if Wilson were playing better his brooding and finger-pointing could have been ignored.
Once Aaron Rodgers went down on the fourth play of the Jets season opener, the Jets front office should have made phone calls day and night until they found a quarterback better than Wilson. Josh Dobbs was traded a few weeks ago for little to nothing, so that would have been the ideal move.
If they didn’t want Dobbs, there were several other players they should have acquired via trade. How about Cooper Rush, Tyrod Taylor or Jameis Winston? There had to be a better way than going forward with Wilson, yet the Jets chose to charge ahead with a quarterback they knew was not good enough to lead the team to the playoffs.
Instead, they have squandered a year with one of the best defenses in the NFL. Who knows how many of those players will be back next season. The Jets acquired Rodgers because they were aware they needed to make a big push with their strong roster. Him getting hurt was no excuse to take the foot off the gas. Thanksgiving is next week and Saleh has no idea who to start at QB because he has no good answers in his locker room and the trade deadline has long passed.
It appears that Rodgers is going to be able claim all offseason that he could have returned to the field for Week 16 after suffering a torn achilles. He is not going to have an opportunity to prove it because the Jets will be long out of the playoff picture by then.