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Johnson U-Turns On Wilson’s Potential Jets Future

Woody Johnson

It continues to be full steam ahead for all National Football League franchises right now as preparations continue for the coming 2024 divisional battles, but it is shaping up to be an interesting year for the New York Jets – particularly when it comes to quarterback Zach Wilson.

After just four plays of the Jets’ opening week game in the 2023 campaign, quarterback Aaron Rodgers picked up an injury that ultimately kept him out for the entire season, and 24-year-old Wilson unsuccessfully stepped into the breach. His play across those games was very poor, and he certainly faced plenty of criticism from fans and commentators, and it was fully expected that he would simply be moving on during the off-season and odds here would have fully represented that belief.

However, at a recent NFL league meeting, our owner Woody Johnson stated that if the franchise were unable to secure a trade on the player, they would absolutely not be cutting him from the team, we would just keep him instead.

“If we don’t trade him, we’re going to keep him.”

The announcement will surprise plenty in the Jets fan base, as it was only a few weeks ago that Johnson had slammed the performances of the QB, stating that we simply ‘didn’t have a backup’ to Rodgers on the roster, despite Wilson being our former second overall pick back in the 2021 draft.

The preferred outcome remains moving Wilson off the roster, as Johnson believes this would now be the best option for both parties, and he feels a change in scenery would be of greater benefit to the player himself given his experiences so far as it would better allow him to ‘wipe the slate clean’.

But in explaining the decision not to cut him if a trade proved to be unfeasible, he described Wilson as a ‘valuable asset’ who he felt would improve further in time. Although he felt that would happen quicker with a new team, he was not prepared to cut his losses on the player just yet – also citing that it had proven to be very unfortunate that he had not had a full year to learn from under Rodgers as he felt that would have already brought him on massively.

Even though the Jets have signed Tyrod Taylor to be our backup option for 2024, it is undoubtedly a softening of the attitude from our owner, particularly the pivot to being more understanding, and even sympathetic, to how he was thrown straight back into the firing line when the plan had always been for him to sit out, watch, observe and learn from a ‘master’ as that is clearly what he needs right now.

Those in the Jet Nation will have their own thoughts on the notable walk back, it could well be he is reflecting differently on things now following the arrival of experienced 34-year-old Taylor and realizes that Wilson is now in the position he needs to be to develop, albeit pastures new may speed up the process, or it may simply be that he is trying to elicit greater interest from others in doing a trade by appearing to be far less desperate to move him on.

Only Johnson and those in the front office will honestly know the answer to that question, and fans will have to simply see what the future holds.

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Steve Johnson

This Article Was Written By Steve Johnson

Steve Johnson


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