What Happened to Zach Wilson? NFL Insider Reports QB Hesitant To Retake Starting Role

Reports are that Zach Wilson may have turned down the opportunity to be the starting quarterback for the Jets again this year. Let's take a closer look at the situation.

Just about nothing has been regular or as planned for the New York Jets this season. In a season derailed in the first minutes of the season when Aaron Rodgers went down with an Achilles tear and saw Zach Wilson take over, every moment from there on out has felt like a roller coaster for the Jets.

Among the will-he-won’t-he status of Rodgers’ return, Monday afternoon has provided us with another interesting saga in the Jets’ pursuit to roll out a starting quarterback on Sundays.

NFL Insider Reports QB Hesitant To Retake Starting Role

Just when you thought things could not get any stranger for the Jets in 2023, today Zack Rosenblatt and Dianna Russini of The Athletic reported that Wilson was “reluctant [toward] stepping back in” as the starter. This is despite the team’s willingness to reinsert him at that spot and has left a bit of confusion around the team and how unprecedented it would be for a player to pass on an opportunity.

The idea that a quarterback in the NFL would decline to play is truly bizarre, and while the reporters who put out the information stand on their reporting, head coach Robert Saleh pushed back on the notion.

“If he was reluctant to play — he wouldn’t be here,” Saleh said before adding that “[he] wants the ball.”

While Saleh’s words seem to be a pushback on the earlier report, Russini is not backing down from what she reported and further solidified what she said following Saleh’s statement.

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“Aaron Rodgers reached out to Zach Wilson in an effort to advise him to resume the starter role, but at the time, Wilson remained apprehensive due to perceived injury risk, per sources.”

While this is a classic he-said-she-said situation between reporter and coach, what can’t be debated is how truly unique this situation is. Despite everything that has gone on in New York this year, not many had a debate on whether Wilson, while fully healthy, would even want to continue to play in games for the team.

A Quarterback Carousel in New York

This all comes off the heels of Tim Boyle replacing Wilson after the latter’s ineffectiveness went on long enough. However, Boyle went 0-2 as the Jets’ starter and was pulled in the second half of Sunday’s 13-8 loss to the Atlanta Falcons. Upon his dismissal from the game, Boyle was replaced by veteran journeyman Trevor Siemian.

Fast forward to the current day and a matchup with a good Houston Texans team coming up on Sunday, and one could wonder who will be under center for the team … and if they even want to be there at all.

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