3:59 p.m.: With Wilson expected to be out for two to four weeks, many have wondered if the Jets might need a move at quarterback, in case his knee injury ends up taking longer to heal than expected. But Jets trust veteran backup quarterback Joe Flacco “hold the fort” until Wilson’s eventual return, according to CBS Sports’ Josina Anderson.
Anderson even highlighted the idea that naming Flacco the week 1 starter may be the most responsible thing to do, so that Wilson and company don’t feel rushed trying to get him back on the field in time for the regular season before he’s fully recovered. While a Week 1 announcement may be a little premature, those in the building know there’s no need to rush Wilson to the field.
Flacco has been with the Jets for just under two years as a backup quarterback, initially behind Sam Darnold then behind Wilson. After his first year as a backup for the Jets, he signed a one-year contract with Philadelphia to back up Jalen hurts before being traded to the Jets at the end of October last year.
Flacco is yet to win a game with the Jets going 0-5 in his five starts. He proved to be a usable starter during that stretch, however, throwing nine touchdowns to just three interceptions as a Jet.
The initial thought, if the prognosis for Wilson is correct, is that Flacco would only be needed for one regular season game at most, but, if Wilson needs more time to get back to 100%, New York has the greatest confidence in the Flacco, 37 years old.
10:24 a.m.: Wilson suffered a meniscus tear, according to Brian Costello of the New York Post (on Twitter). Coupled with the bone bruise, Wilson is expected to be out for two or four weeks. This is obviously great news for the Jets, and ESPN’s Rich Cimini tweet that the team thinks their starting QB might be ready for Week 1.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter tweet that Wilson will undergo arthroscopic surgery to fix the problem. This upcoming surgery will determine whether Wilson’s return is closer to the two-week schedule or the four-week schedule, according to Schefter (on Twitter). Wilson will get more opinions to determine if he needs knee reach, tweet Howe.
10:07 a.m.: Wilson suffered a bone bruise and his ligaments are “in good condition,” according to Jeff Howe of The Athletic (on Twitter). The QB is set to undergo more tests to determine if there has been any damage to his meniscus. At that point, we should get more clarity on a recovery timeline.
9:09 a.m.: The Jets hope to have dodged a major bullet with their franchise quarterback. After Zach Wilson left last night’s pre-season opener with a knee problem, it was feared the injury could end his season. Fortunately, ESPN’s Rich Cimini writes that the organization hopes Wilson avoided a season-ending injury. The QB will undergo an MRI today to determine the extent of the damage to the knee.
Coach Robert Saleh said after the game that Wilson’s ACL was “supposed to be intact.” There are early indications that the QB may have injured his PCL again, according to Cimini. It would be the same PCL that forced Wilson to miss four games during his rookie campaign. Assuming the Jets’ optimism proves correct, the best-case scenario, according to SNYtv’s Connor Hughes (on Twitter), would see Wilson sidelined for just two to three weeks, while the “worst case scenario” would see the QB out for four to six weeks.
The non-contact injury certainly didn’t look great when it happened. Wilson was injured during the Jets’ second offensive series, with the QB’s knee appearing to “flex” before falling to the ground. Wilson was able to get off the field under his own power, but he had a noticeable limp. Questions from Mike Kaye of ProFootballNetwork.com Wilson’s decision to rush for extra yards; after passing the line of scrimmage, Wilson could have continued his way to the sideline, but he decided to cut for extra yards. He “planted his foot awkwardly”, resulting in the injury. Saleh seemed to agree with that sentiment, telling reporters that Wilson should have gone out of bounds instead of trying to shake the defender (per Kaye on Twitter).
The Jets have been a little quiet since last night, but that has nothing to do with Wilson’s prospects. On the contrary, as Hughes notes, the staff are a little ‘frightened’ after the way things have gone with the offensive lineman. Mekhi Becton. When the right tackle injured his knee, there was hope that he would not be away for long. However, later tests showed the lineman had suffered a broken kneecap and would be out for the season.
“I’m done trying to decipher the doctor’s language, so I’m just going to let the MRI roll out and figure it out tomorrow,” Saleh said after the game (via Kaye).
Assuming Wilson misses at least a few weeks, the Jets can use the extra reps to determine QB No. 2 on the depth chart. Veteran Joe Flacco seems to have a firm grip on this gig, despite not leaving the sidelines in last night’s contest. Mike White got an extended look in place of Wilson, with the former UDFA chris streveler also get reps.