For the second consecutive game on Sunday, former first-round pick Zach Wilson was holding a clipboard for the New York Jets.
The quarterback was benched ahead of New York’s Week 12 outing against the Chicago Bears after putting up a stinker of a performance in the team’s previous game.
Still only 23, it was somewhat of a surprise that the Jets opted to bench Wilson. Sure the former No. 2 pick has not looked the part of a starter, but sitting him doesn’t display much confidence that the BYU product can be the long-term solution in Jersey.
In Wilson’s stead the past two games, Mike White has played well. He led New York to a win over the Bears in Week 12 before a narrow loss to the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday.
While White is not the long-term solution for these Jets, it’s safe to say head coach Robert Saleh and Co. are going to be looking in a different direction than Wilson during the offseason. If so, there’s every reason to believe that the young signal caller will be traded. Below, we look at three ideal scenarios to help Wilson jumpstart his career.
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New Orleans Saints make a play for Zach Wilson
New Orleans’ current quarterback situation is not sustainable. Veteran stopgap Andy Dalton continues to start for the four-win team. Jameis Winston is backng him up. Without a first-round pick in the 2023 NFL Draft and likely forced to go into a full-scale rebuild, it makes sense for general manager Mickey Loomis to look in this direction.
New Orleans can offer up its second-round pick in April and a future early-round pick that includes conditions based on Wilson’s performance. In turn, he joins an offense that includes stud playmakers such as running back Alvin Kamara and wide receiver Chris Olave.
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Las Vegas Raiders start anew with young quarterback
This could potentially be the best scenario for both Wilson and his Jets. The idea would be for New York to acquire an accomplished veteran in Derek Carr as part of a package for Wilson. The Jets are 7-5 and find themselves firmly in the playoff race. They’re not going to rely on a young quarterback next season. Of all the options potentially available to them this coming spring, Carr could make a ton of sense for New York.
- Zach Wilson stats (2021-22): 55.6% completion, 3,613 yards, 13 TD, 16 INT, 70.7 QB rating
As for the Raiders, they are in the midst of a lost season under first-year head coach Josh McDaniels. Despite this, Raiders owner Mark Davis is committed to him over the long-term. There’s also reports surfacing out of Sin City that Carr could be as good as done with the Raiders. Why not include him in a package for Wilson while acquiring a potential franchise guy?
Related: 2023 NFL mock draft
Los Angeles Rams get Matthew Stafford insurance with Zach Wilson
To say that this season has not gone swimmingly for Stafford and his Rams would be an understatement. The defending champion is currently on injured reserve and will not return this season. In his stead, the combination of Bryce Perkins and John Wolford are getting reps for a Rams team that’s out of playoff contention.
Also without a first-round pick in the 2023 NFL Draft, Los Angeles can acquire some insurance by offering up multiple draft picks to the Jets for Wilson. General manager Les Snead has not been afraid to do just that in the past. Why not double down by bringing in a high-upside youngster to learn behind Matthew Stafford for a season or two?