The Oklahoma Drill Podcast starts its positional preview series with the New York Jets quarterback situation featuring Zach Wilson.
The NFL is rapidly nearing its true offseason.
Free agency, the draft, and rookie minicamp have come and gone. OTAs have started and will last a few brief weeks, but are optional for players. There are no mandatory team activities for any player until minicamp, June 15-17. After minicamp, no official team activities are permitted until training camp starts on July 27, over a month later.
The Jets roster heading into training camp is likely to remain as it is now, with a few veteran signings or trades in the mix. New York Jets head coach Robert Saleh even recently stated the team doesn’t plan to add any veteran corners, as it would “eat up reps” for the young players they drafted in April.
It’s reasonable to assume that mentality applies to the rest of the team, and the Jets training camp roster is set. With no big-time player acquisitions expected, it’s a fair time to evaluate the roster as a whole.
This week, the Oklahoma Drill Podcast begins its positional preview series, starting with the quarterbacks.
Zach Wilson is the main topic of discussion, with hosts Andrew, Matt, and Vitor each dissecting a different aspect of Wilson’s game and his transition to the pros.
Vitor begins the chat with a summary of Wilson’s mental processing. Wilson possesses advanced mental capabilities in reading defenses pre- and post-snap. He is not often fooled and avoids negative plays with check-downs and throw-aways. He’s also able to find favorable matchups and exploit them, showing a command of his offense. This high football IQ and quick reaction ability should help Wilson’s transition immensely.
Andrew adds on by breaking down Wilson’s ball placement and how he uses his arm to take advantage of what he sees. Wilson’s ball placement is superb and best of all deliberate. After studying the film of Aaron Rodgers and Drew Brees, Wilson learned what separates good quarterbacks from elite ones: throwing receivers open. Wilson credits this epiphany as an integral part of his leap in 2020, and it should only help his pro career.
Finally, Matt closes by analyzing Wilson’s athletic ability and how the Jets can feature him in the running game. Wilson will likely be used on naked bootlegs since they are a staple of the Shanahan scheme. But beyond the boot, Wilson’s legs can be a surprising change-up to keep defenses on their toes.
A few QB counters off an Elijah Moore jet-motion sprinkled in once or twice a game will help keep Wilson clean when he does keep the ball. On top of the curveballs, Wilson should also be featured on a couple of zone reads. Like the counters, Wilson keeping the ball on a zone-read will keep backside defenders honest, creating room for the shotgun run game.
The group wraps things up with an assessment of the current backups and a handful of veterans that could be added in the future. Listen to the Oklahoma Drill Podcast for the full discussion, and tune in each week as the Position Preview series continues.