LAS VEGAS — The long offseason for the New York Jets is underway after the team collapsed, losing seven of their final eight games to miss the playoffs. Here at Shrine Bowl practices, there has been plenty of news and opinions on the Jets’ recent moves and the state of the franchise.
Will the Jets Move On From Zach Wilson?
Even before arriving in Las Vegas for Shrine Bowl practice, Pro Football Network heard that players were urging Jets general manager Joe Douglas to move on from offensive coordinator Mike LaFleur and QB Zach Wilson during exit interviews at the end of the season before the Jets officially moved on from the offensive coordinator.
Several players were critical of LaFleur’s game planning and inability to make halftime adjustments. When it comes to Wilson, several players said the second pick of the 2021 NFL Draft is not the quarterback to lead the franchise moving forward — they feel the team should stick with Mike White or trade for a veteran.
Here in Vegas, league sources say that the Jets front office is ready to move on from Wilson and trade for a veteran, but owner Woody Johnson believes the former BYU quarterback can be salvaged. We’re told Johnson, whose been fully engaged in the Jets’ decision-making the past few weeks, believes Wilson is still an arm talent that should not be discarded.
Sources here in Vegas also tell PFN the Jets have said in conversations they will make a move for one of three veterans: Derek Carr, Jimmy Garappolo, or, yes — Aaron Rodgers. It is interesting that Rodgers is the only quarterback of the three who does not have a no-trade clause in his contract, though the belief is there’s a gentlemen’s agreement he’ll have a say where he’ll be sent when the Packers trade him.
League insiders here in Vegas were not complimentary of the recent moves by the New York Jets, specifically the hiring of offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett and offensive line coach Keith Carter. Some were extremely harsh on the hiring of Carter, and as one source told PFN on Saturday, it seems as if the Jets have a “death wish” with the hiring of both.
There is some good news, though. Jets offensive tackle Mehki Becton is training hard this offseason and tipping the scales under 370 pounds — about 40 pounds lighter than he was one year ago.
Becton has moved on from offensive line trainer Duke Mayweather and is training in New Jersey at the Parisi facility, which has helped his conditioning. With new coaches leading the Jets’ offense, the hope is Becton can get back to where he was as a rookie in 2020 when he had a terrific season at left tackle.