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Through a week full of adversity, Zach Wilson delivers finest performance of career in win vs. Texans

Antwan Staley, New York Daily News on

Published in Football

Adversity can be one of life’s greatest teachers.

The last two weeks have been challenging for Jets quarterback Zach Wilson. He was benched and demoted to emergency quarterback and many didn’t expect the 24-year-old to start — or even play in — another game for the Jets.

But when his number was called during Sunday’s 30-6 victory against the Texans, Wilson put on his finest performance in a Jets uniform. He completed 27 of 36 passes for 301 yards and two touchdowns. He also finished with a quarterback rating of 117.9 in the pouring rain.

Sunday was the third time Wilson has thrown for at least 300 yards since he was drafted in 2021.

Jets coach Robert Saleh called Wilson’s performance, the best game of his career.

“I think the word that I gave you guys was being aggressively smart is the key,” Wilson said about his performance. “It’s about taking shots when you feel like it’s an opportunity there. When it’s not, it’s about protecting the ball and checking it down and having a mixture of both.”

 

Wilson has had a turbulent time during his three seasons with the Jets. After being selected No. 2 overall during the 2021 draft, Wilson has faced much criticism from fans, local media and even former players.

Many Jets fans have booed Wilson during his three seasons with the club. Even former Chargers and Patriots safety and current NBC analyst Rodney Harrison called Wilson “garbage” after the Chiefs 23-20 victory against the Jets on Oct. 1.

Wilson has been benched three times within the last year after poor play. That led the Jets to trade for Aaron Rodgers last April, hoping he could ignite their offense after finishing toward the bottom of the league in yards and points scored in 2022.

But after Rodgers went down with an Achilles injury four plays into their Week 1 game against the Bills on Sept. 11, the Jets again turned to Wilson, hoping his play had improved enough to help them make a run at the playoffs. However, that didn’t prove to be the case.

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