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New York Jets quarterback Zach Wilson lost his starting job, prompting a shift in the quarterback’s perspective.
ESPN’s Rich Cimini reported that Wilson attempted to “win back” his teammates by apologizing for failing to take accountability for his showing during Sunday’s loss to the New England Patriots.
This comes after head coach Robert Saleh told reporters Mike White would start Sunday’s game against the Chicago Bears.
Wilson didn’t only lose his starting job. He won’t even be active against the Bears, meaning Joe Flacco will be the backup.
Flacco started three games earlier this season when Wilson was sidelined by injury and went 1-2.
On the field, Wilson is coming off a brutal performance. He went 9-of-22 for 77 yards in an ugly 10-3 loss to the New England Patriots that didn’t feature a single offensive touchdown. That the showing came just two games after he threw three interceptions against the Patriots made the struggles stand out even more.
Wide receiver Garrett Wilson publicly criticized the offense, and cornerback Sauce Gardner and defensive end John Franklin-Myers liked tweets that were critical of the quarterback before saying the likes were accidental.
Perhaps the biggest issue came when Wilson said “no” if he felt like he let the defense down with his play.
“Sources inside the Jets’ losing locker room told SNY that Wilson was walking around after the game ‘like he isn’t the problem,'” Connor Hughes of SNY reported. “It rubbed more than a few the wrong way, frustrating several others.”
According to Cimini, Wilson “wanted to clear the air with teammates, some of whom were upset by his postgame comments” with Wednesday’s apology.
“It’s deserved,” Wilson said of the criticism he has faced. “The way that I handled the situation wasn’t right. I’ve got to be a better football player, and then I’ve got to be a better leader for these guys. I have an opportunity to turn the page here as a player and a leader.”
Despite the drama, this is far from a lost season for the Jets.
They are 6-4 and in a battle for an AFC wild-card spot. Sunday is a golden opportunity to get right against a Bears team that traded star defenders Roquan Smith and Robert Quinn and could be without quarterback Justin Fields because of a shoulder injury.
White appeared in four games last season and completed 66.7 percent of his passes for 953 yards, five touchdowns and eight interceptions. He will look to avoid the turnovers and help the Jets get back on track against Chicago.