EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ – New York Jets quarterback Zach Wilson suffered perhaps the most humiliating game of his NFL career when he was booed at MetLife Stadium Thursday night and replaced by former practice team quarterback Chris Streveler, who lost 19-3 to Jacksonville. jaguars.
“That’s it [tough]Of the booing fans, Wilson said: “I don’t blame them. We have a passionate fan base and they’re here to watch us score. We don’t score, we don’t make the first kicks, we don’t move the ball, and frankly, we can’t hit the ball. Of course they’re going to be upset.”
Wilson completed only nine of 18 passes for 92 yards, making a desperate blocking before halftime. He finished with a 5.2 QBR. This was the Jets’ fourth defeat that nearly killed their playoff chances.
Coach Robert Saleh said he wasn’t considering taking Wilson to the bench at halftime, despite having just 66 total yards and trailing 13-3, but took him out with 3:31 left in the third quarter. By then it was 16-3. Just hours before the match came Streveler, who had risen from the training roster. Although it did not result in any points, he immediately took the offense to his longest drive.
Saleh said he didn’t have Wilson in reserve. He said he went to Streveler in hopes that his ability to run would ignite his dormant games. While that was the primary reason for the change, Saleh allowed Streveler to play for the rest of the game and kept Wilson, the second overall pick of 2021, on the bench.
Five weeks ago, Wilson backed up in favor of Mike White, a former fifth-round pick for the Dallas Cowboys who fired up the offense. On Thursday night, his claim to fame was replaced by a journeyman with three pre-season wins.
“We were trying to change to keep the running game going,” Saleh said. “I know Zach struggled. Streveler came in, played a few games, fired up the offense and got the explosive game. It grew like a good avalanche for Strev. So we wanted to give him a chance to finish the drive. When we got him back we decided we were already here, so let’s go with Strev.”
The Jets showed signs of life with Streveler, who ran for 54 yards in the first game of the season and completed 10 of the 15 passes for 90 yards.
Wilson stayed on the sidelines, ready to return to the game, but never took the call. The rain-drenched crowd roared as Streveler walked in, and fans adored his bold, improvisational style. The pregame plan was to use it with a small package of ongoing games, but they expanded their repertoire as the fourth quarter progressed.
The Jets activated three quarterbacks for the first time, with Streveler and Joe Flacco supporting Wilson. Flacco was not traded.
Wilson said he had no issues with the third quarter change.
“We didn’t have anything there,” he said of the crime. “You can’t blame [Saleh] in this case. He got Chris on the field and he’s absolutely fantastic with his legs and arm and he was able to give us some spark there. You could see that’s how we moved the ball most all day, so you can’t blame him.”
Wilson was substituted in-game for the first time in an uninjured state. On November 23, after a 77-yard day against the New England Patriots, he was drafted for the first time in his life.
He seemed unable to find the words to say, admitting his confidence had been shaken and said he wasn’t good enough for his teammates.
“Man, I don’t know,” he said. “I felt like I had no rhythm there. [I was] I’m just trying to find some confidence on the field, just find something to get us going — a little spark. I didn’t get anything from there, man.
“Yeah, it’s tough and I’m trying to get over it,” Wilson added. “But I have to be optimistic here. I believe in myself, even if others believe.”
“If you don’t try to accept the fact that there’s a trust issue out there, you’re neglecting it because people make sure they can conquer the world when they trust themselves. We have to help him and that starts with coaching,” Saleh said.
Saleh declined to speculate about the Week 17 start. Presumably, they will revert to White (broken ribs), but still not confirmed for contact. If he’s not cleared, it’s going to be a tough decision for the Jets.
“It’s not the last time we’ve seen him,” Saleh said of Wilson.