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Zach Wilson’s record-breaking run highlights Utah ties performances during NFL’s Week 16

New York Jets quarterback Zach Wilson (2) rushes for a touchdown against the Jacksonville Jaguars.
New York Jets quarterback Zach Wilson (2) rushes for a touchdown during an NFL football game against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday, Dec. 26, 2021, in East Rutherford, N.J.
Adam Hunger, Associated Press

Zach Wilson relied on both his legs and his arm to help the New York Jets beat the Jacksonville Jaguars and fellow rookie quarterback Trevor Lawrence on Sunday.

Wilson accounted for one touchdown passing and one rushing in the Jets’ 26-21 win at MetLife Stadium, with his 52-yard touchdown run in the first quarter standing out.

It was the longest run by a quarterback in franchise history.

Wilson escaped a sack attempt on the third-and-5 play before scrambling toward the far sideline, where he outran a defender looking to push him out, then cut back to elude another defender before racing to the end zone.

“We got man coverage, pressure up the middle,” Wilson told the team’s website in explaining his touchdown run. “I had a chance to dump it off underneath but I just saw a huge lane. Once I got by the sideline, I planned to go out of bounds, but he didn’t hit me or push me out, so I just kept going. Then the second guy did the same, so I cut back, and it just worked out for me.”

Wilson ended the game with four carries for 91 yards rushing (also a franchise record for a quarterback), including runs of 17 and 20 yards.

He had a relatively quiet passing day, finishing 14 of 22 for 102 yards, though his fourth-quarter touchdown pass gave New York a 23-15 lead with just over nine minutes to play

Wilson’s touchdown pass came on fourth-and-goal, as he rolled right and eluded defenders before throwing on the run to tackle eligible offensive lineman Conor McDermott for a touchdown pass.

“That was probably the highlight of my entire life so far, that touchdown pass,” Wilson said. “The funny part was we put the play in in practice and the O-line gives me crap for never throwing it to them. ... I threw it to ‘Derm’ two times in practice, just joking around, ‘Hey, that’d be funny if he caught it.’ It’s not even part of the read.

“So I go through one, two, three, pressure comes up the middle, I escape to the right, and I just see this big dude with his hands in the air in the back of the end zone with nobody around him. I’m just like, ‘Oh my gosh, should I throw it to him? Is this happening?’

“The dude made an awesome catch coming down with it,” Wilson continued. “And that was probably one of the funniest moments of my college, NFL, high school career to hit that one right there. It was awesome.”


How Utah ties performed during Week 16

Several Utah ties made a significant impact during Week 16 of the NFL season. Here’s a look at how local ties performed:

Titans 20, 49ers 17

Tennessee

  • No locals on roster.

San Francisco

  • Fred Warner, LB, BYU: Started at linebacker; team-high 6 tackles (5 solo), 1 tackle for loss on a third-down play; 63 snaps (62 on defense, 1 on special teams).
  • Mitch Wishnowsky, P, Utah: 2 punts with 35-yard average; 1 inside 20; 8 snaps (all on special teams).

Packers 24, Browns 22

Green Bay

  • Tipa Galeai, LB, Utah State: 2 solo tackles; 1 sack for loss of 3 yards, 1 tackle for loss, 1 QB hurry; 27 snaps (16 on defense, 11 on special teams).
  • Jordan Love, QB, Utah State: Did not play.

Cleveland

  • Porter Gustin, DE, Salem Hills High: Started at defensive end; 2 tackles (1 solo); 43 snaps (39 on defense, 4 on special teams).
  • Sione Takitaki, LB, BYU: 1 solo tackle, 1 QB hurry; 41 snaps (21 on defense, 20 on special teams).

Colts 22, Cardinals 16

Indianapolis

  • No locals on active roster.

Arizona

  • Leki Fotu, DT, Utah and Herriman High: Started at defensive tackle; 5 tackles (2 solo); 50 snaps (40 on defense, 10 on special teams).

Falcons 20, Lions 16

Atlanta

  • No locals on roster.

Detroit

  • John Penisini, DL, Utah, Snow College and West Jordan High: 1 tackle; 16 snaps (10 on defense, 6 on special teams).
  • Penei Sewell, OT, Desert Hills High: Started at right tackle; 67 snaps (all on offense).
  • Jamaal Williams, RB, BYU: Started at running back; 19 carries, 77 yards; 28 snaps (all on offense).

Buccaneers 32, Panthers 6

Tampa Bay

  • No locals on active roster.

Carolina

  • Brady Christensen, OT, BYU and Bountiful High: Started at left tackle; 72 snaps (70 on offense, 2 on special teams).

Bengals 41, Ravens 21

Cincinnati

  • Jalen Davis, CB, Utah State: 6 snaps (all on special teams).

Baltimore

  • Ty’Son Williams, RB, BYU: Did not play.

Texans 41, Chargers 29

Houston

  • Dominik Eberle, K, Utah State: Made field goals of 51 and 25 yards, missed from 52 yards, made 5 of 5 point-after attempts; 16 snaps (all on special teams).

Los Angeles

  • Michael Davis, CB, BYU: Did not play.
  • Alohi Gilman, S, Orem High: Started at safety; 6 solo tackles; 83 snaps (68 on defense, 15 on special teams).

Rams 30, Vikings 23

Los Angeles

  • Terrell Burgess, S, Utah: 16 snaps (all on special teams).
  • Matt Gay, K, Utah and Orem High: Made field goals of 32, 31 and 24 yards, made 3 of 3 point-after attempts; 13 snaps (all on special teams).

Minnesota

  • Nick Vigil, LB, Utah State and Fremont High: 2 tackles (1 solo), 1 tackle for loss; 32 snaps (9 on defense, 23 on special teams).

Bills 33, Patriots 21

Buffalo

  • Taron Johnson, CB, Weber State: 4 tackles (2 solo), 1 pass deflection, including two stops on third-down plays; 45 snaps (all on defense).
  • Star Lotulelei, DT, Utah, Snow College and Bingham High: Not active for game.
  • Zack Moss, RB, Utah: 3 carries, 12 yards, 1 reception, 13 yards; 26 snaps (all on offense).

New England

  • Kyle Van Noy, LB, BYU: Started at linebacker; 7 tackles (5 solo), 1 QB hurry that led to an incomplete pass on a third-down play; 71 snaps (all on defense).

Jets 26, Jaguars 21

New York

  • Javelin Guidry, CB, Utah: Started at cornerback; 7 tackles (5 solo), 1 QB hurry that led to an incomplete pass on a third-down play, 1 pass deflection on fourth-and-goal from the 1 on Jacksonville’s final play; 53 snaps (44 on defense, 9 on special teams).
  • Kai Nacua, S, BYU: 2 solo tackles; 24 snaps (10 on defense, 14 on special teams).
  • Zach Wilson, QB, BYU and Corner Canyon High: Started at quarterback; completed 14 of 22 passes, 102 yards, 1 touchdown (on a 1-yard pass in fourth quarter), 4 carries, 91 yards, 1 touchdown (a 52-yarder in the first quarter); sacked 1 time; 58 snaps (all on offense).

Jacksonville

  • Nevin Lawson, CB, Utah State: 3 tackles (1 solo); 27 snaps (14 on defense, 13 on special teams).
  • Jay Tufele, DT, Bingham High: 4 snaps (all on defense).

Eagles 34, Giants 10

Philadelphia

  • Sua Opeta, OG, Weber State and Stansbury High: 14 snaps (7 on offense, 7 on special teams).

New York

  • Devontae Booker, RB, Utah: 6 carries, 27 yards, 4 receptions, 19 yards, 1 solo tackle; 56 tackles (41 on offense, 15 on special teams).

Bears 25, Seahawks 24

Chicago

  • Patrick Scales, LS, Utah State and Weber High: 1 solo tackle; 6 snaps (all on special teams).
  • Khyiris Tonga, DT, BYU and Granger High: 1 tackle; 21 snaps (16 on defense, 5 on special teams).

Seattle

  • Cody Barton, LB, Utah and Brighton High: 2 tackles (1 solo); 23 snaps (3 on defense, 20 on special teams).
  • Bobby Wagner, MLB, Utah State: Started at linebacker; team-high 12 tackles (4 solo); 77 snaps (77 on defense, 3 on special teams).

Chiefs 36, Steelers 10

Kansas City

  • Zayne Anderson, S, BYU and Stansbury High: 1 solo tackle; 18 snaps (all on special teams).
  • Marcus Kemp, WR, Layton High: 1 solo tackle; 29 snaps (11 on offense, 18 on special teams).
  • Daniel Sorensen, S, BYU: 1 pass deflection; 63 snaps (45 on defense, 18 on special teams).

Pittsburgh

  • Miles Killebrew, S, Southern Utah: 16 snaps (1 on defense, 15 on special teams).

Raiders 17, Broncos 13

Las Vegas

  • Jackson Barton, OT, Utah and Brighton High: Did not play.
  • Andre James, C, Herriman High: Started at center; 69 snaps (all on offense).
  • Dallin Leavitt, S, Utah State and BYU: Started at safety; 1 tackle; 57 snaps (42 on defense, 15 on special teams).

Denver

  • Garett Bolles, OT, Utah, Snow College and Westlake High: Started at left tackle; 46 snaps (42 on offense, 4 on special teams).
  • Tim Patrick, WR, Utah: Started at wide receiver; 2 receptions, 18 yards; 36 snaps (all on offense).

Cowboys 56, Football Team 14

Dallas

  • Francis Bernard, LB, Utah, BYU and Herriman High: 7 snaps (all on special teams).
  • Dalton Schultz, TE, Bingham High: Started at tight end; team-high 8 receptions, 82 yards, 1 touchdown (on 9-yard pass in first quarter); 61 snaps (55 on offense, 6 on special teams).

Washington

  • Dax Milne, TE, BYU and Bingham High: 1 reception, 14 yards; 7 snaps (all on offense).

Dolphins 20, Saints 3

Miami

  • Eric Rowe, S, Utah: 1 solo tackle; 26 snaps (all on defense).

New Orleans

  • Marcus Williams, FS, Utah: Started at safety; 3 tackles (1 solo); 65 snaps (all on defense).