Salih backs QB Wilson, slams ‘instant coffee’ era

FLOURHAM PARK, N.J. — New York Jets coach Robert Salih defended Zach Wilson, the embattled quarterback, on Monday, but didn’t give him the starting job this week — not yet, anyway.

Saleh wasn’t committed about which quarterback will start Thursday night against the Jacksonville Jaguars, saying Mike White (fractured ribs) is still being evaluated by doctors. The conclusion is that he prefers White over Wilson, second overall in 2021, but Saleh insisted Wilson has a bright future and drew criticism for being too hard on a second-year quarterback.

“The frustrating thing is that this kid would be a good quarterback, but the NFL and the new instant coffee world we’re in don’t want to give people time,” Saleh said. “So, we looked at it and it was just picked up with a fine-tooth comb.”

It was Saleh who benched Wilson for three games, handing the job over to White, who moved the offense more effectively. White’s rib injury last week led to Wilson’s return on Sunday against the Detroit Lions, a 20-17 loss. Wilson passed for 317 yards and two touchdowns but had a costly interception in the third quarter and missed several open receivers.

The Jets (7-7), losing three in a row, have virtually no margin for error in a playoff race, so Saleh’s quarterback decision is crucial.

Salih praised Wilson despite the uneven performance, saying he took a “big step” and “at least showed some maturity” by overcoming a poor third quarter.

“I’m really for him because, in the past, when he hit speed in a match, he would kind of derail,” Saleh said. “But I thought he did a really good job of getting back on the rails and swinging again in the fourth quarter to lead a touchdown drive.”

Wilson’s scoring one-yard pass to tight end CJ Uzomah gave the Jets a 17-13 lead, which they promptly wrecked on a 51-yard touchdown reception by Lions tight end Brock Wright on a fourth-and-one play that tricked the defense with 1:49 remaining. .

On the Jets’ ensuing possession, Wilson notched three completions but also missed two open receivers and grabbed two sacks. The game ended with a missed 58-yard Greg Zurlein field goal.

“I’ve got to be better, man,” Wilson said after the game.

“The frustrating thing is, this kid would be a good quarterback, but the NFL and the new instant coffee world we’re in don’t want to give people time. So, we look at him and he’s just picking lice with a fine-tooth comb.”

Jets instructor Robert Saleh on Zack Wilson

Saleh said he wanted to name a “very fast” rookie in the short week. White was cleared for practice, but not contact. It was not cleared last week by the Jets. White said he consulted with about 10 outside doctors, and none cleared him.

“There are more tests to see the extent of his recovery,” Saleh said. “There was talk of them feeling like a week would show more healing, some tough, if you will, to get into the field. That’s something he’d have to get from another doctor and he’d still be able to talk to our doctors about it, too, so there’s a lot of Obstacles he has to go through [to start]. “

White was injured eight days ago against the Buffalo Bills. The Jets said their plan last week was to start against the Lions, but they made a surprise announcement last Friday, naming Wilson the starter.

Saleh insisted that the Wilson lineage project is not a factor in the decision-making process. Saleh said that the Jets committed to offering him $35 million in guarantees, but the best players are playing.

“This will never change,” he said.

Injury-wise, the Jets are optimistic about defensive tackle Quinnen Williams (calf) and wide receiver Corey Davis (concussion) playing Thursday night. They both sat on Sunday. Denzel Mims (concussion) is not expected to play wide receiver.

#Salih #backs #Wilson #slams #instant #coffee #era

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *