Zach Wilson will start for the Jets on Sunday after Aaron Rodgers’ latest show of support
Wilson is returning to the Jets starting lineup for the first time since being benched on Nov. 19 during a game against the Buffalo Bills
Zach Wilson is returning to the New York Jets starting lineup on Sunday, three weeks after getting benched.
Jets coach Robert Saleh announced the news Wednesday, noting that Wilson is “fired up” to play.
“Zach gives us our best chance to win, and we’re giving him another opportunity to prove that,” Saleh said.
Wilson was benched on Nov. 19 during a game against the Buffalo Bills in favor of Tim Boyle, who went on to start the past two games, which were both losses.
Boyle was then benched this past Sunday against the Atlanta Falcons, and Trevor Siemian took over.
On Monday, The Athletic reported that the Jets were interested in having Wilson return to the starting lineup but that the former BYU quarterback was resisting that plan due to injury concerns.
But then Saleh refuted the report, saying that Wilson had expressed a desire to start, as the Deseret News previously reported.
On Wednesday, Saleh referenced that past conversation, noting that Wilson is excited to lead the offense once again.
“He came into my office. He wants the ball. He’s excited about getting this opportunity,” Saleh said.
It’s still unclear what the rest of the season and then the offseason will hold for Wilson, who was drafted second overall by the Jets in 2021.
Quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who was meant to be the team’s starter this season but was injured during the first game, has returned to practice and has expressed interest in playing again this season if his repaired Achilles is stable.
“It’s been a wild ride, and I look forward to taking back the reins pretty soon,” Rodgers said on “The Pat McAfee Show” Tuesday.
How Aaron Rodgers defended Zach Wilson
Earlier in the interview, Rodgers came to Wilson’s defense in response to the report about Wilson’s resistance to returning to the starting lineup. He described the report as an attack on Wilson’s character.
“When you use sources and whether intentional or unintentional try to assassinate someone’s character like that report does for Zach, I have a real hard time with that,” he said. “You’re basically saying this kid is quitting on the team and doesn’t want to play and is giving the middle finger to the organization.”
The four-time MVP said he wouldn’t speak for Wilson on the subject, but he went on to praise the third-year quarterback, whom he has known since the two met during joint preseason practices in 2021.
“I’ll tell you that I love the kid and I’ve spent a lot of time with him and I think he’s an amazing young man and he is young. He’s in his early 20s, and I’ve had a blast spending time with him. He’s gone through a lot of (expletive) in the last three years, and he’s got every right to be frustrated and disappointed about it. I think he’s done a good job of taking accountability this year when it’s been his part to do it,” he said.
The Jets will face the Houston Texans on Sunday at 11 a.m. MST.