Aaron Rodgers’ ‘power of the mind’ could put Zach Wilson back on the bench
Rodgers, who tore his Achilles during the first New York Jets game of the season, is aiming to make a speedy recovery and return to the field
When New York Jets quarterback Aaron Rodgers went down with an Achilles injury during the first quarter of the first game of the season, the pressure to lead the team on an improbable Super Bowl run transferred to Zach Wilson’s shoulders.
Wilson stumbled under the weight of fans’ expectations at first, and his poor play prompted some to call on the Jets to trade for or sign a replacement.
But over the past three weeks, Wilson has shown improvement, and, on Sunday, he helped his team beat the previously undefeated Philadelphia Eagles and improve to 3-3.
“I’m having tons of fun, especially when we pull out a big win like that,” Wilson said after the game, as the Deseret News previously reported.
Unfortunately for Wilson, continued success might, counterintuitively, land him back on the bench. Rodgers is expected to do everything he can to reclaim the starting quarterback role — and defy expectations that he’ll miss the rest of the season — if the Jets secure a spot in the playoffs.
He’s already walking without crutches and throwing a football weeks earlier than experts on Achilles injuries expected him to.
“I’ve got friends who have had Achilles injuries, and what he’s doing, according to them, is absolutely ridiculous. For him to be walking already, I wouldn’t put anything past him,” said Jets head coach Robert Saleh during an appearance on “Good Morning Football” Tuesday, according to NFL.com.
Aaron Rodgers injury update
Rodgers addressed his rapid recovery himself on Tuesday during his weekly appearance on “The Pat McAfee Show.”
He said that, from the beginning of his post-surgery period, he told his doctor that he wanted to “push” the usual recovery timeline.
“I believe in the power of intention,” Rodgers said, adding that the “power of your mind” and “power of the manifestations of desires” can help you defy expectations.
Rodgers explained that he’s currently working with medical experts to practice weight transfers and his throwing motion on his injured left leg.
Next up will be jogging and then successfully making it through a pregame workout.
“It’s not going to be boom, boom, boom,” Rodgers said, noting that each stage of the recovery process will take time.
How long is the recovery for a torn Achilles?
Still, Rodgers acknowledged to McAfee that he’s ahead of the typical schedule for recovery from a torn Achilles.
Last season, running back Cam Akers was able to return to NFL action five months after getting his Achilles repaired, and his recovery was considered remarkably speedy.
Rodgers had a more advanced version of Akers’ surgery, so he’s hoping to be back in action even more quickly. If he can return for a Jets playoff run in mid-January, that would mean he only needed four months to get from surgery to playing shape.
“A lot of people can doubt him, but I’m not doubting him. We’re leaving the door open for him but it’s amazing to see how hard he’s been working and the intent at which he’s been doing it,” Saleh said Tuesday.
Rodgers comments on Zach Wilson
During his most recent appearance on “The Pat McAfee Show,” Rodgers also addressed Wilson’s improved play.
Rodgers said he doesn’t really “deserve a ton of credit for his progression,” but that it’s probably been good for Wilson “to have an example of an older guy who’s had some success.”
“It’s been his own work ethic (and) his desire to improve in all areas of his life” that’s helped Wilson, Rodgers said. “He deserves a lot of credit.”
Rodgers didn’t address the fact that if he’s successful in his plan to return for the playoffs, Wilson, a former BYU Cougar, will be benched.
Instead, he described his efforts to offer Wilson support.
“I love being around him, love pulling for him,” Rodgers said.