Zach Wilson stars in New York Jets’ second consecutive preseason victory
Two second-quarter touchdowns for Zach Wilson, the first unofficial tallies of his NFL career, were enough to give the New York Jets (2-0) a 23-14 preseason victory over the Green Bay Packers (0-2) on Saturday afternoon at Lambeau Field.
The BYU product partook in four possessions on Saturday, completing 9-of-11 passes for 128 yards. Four of those completions went to Corey Davis, who tallied 70 yards on those grabs.
Wilson’s first two drives ended in a Matt Ammendola field goal from 54 yards out and a Braden Mann punt that situated the Packers inside their own 15. Green Bay tallied their first points of the day on a 12-yard rushing score by Kylin Hill.
Kylin Hill doing Kylin Hill things.
Hill has scored in both preseason games that he has played. pic.twitter.com/fl5PwRdfYL
— Tru Maroon Nation (@TruMaroonNation) August 21, 2021
As the first quarter ended, Wilson found Corey Davis for consecutive receptions tallying 41 yards, situating the Jets deep in Green Bay territory. A long second down brought upon by a penalty appeared to stifle the team’s chances at six. But immediately after the penalty, Wilson found Tyler Kroft for an 18-yard touchdown that gave the Jets the lead back. It was Wilson’s first unofficial NFL touchdown.
Zach Wilson hits Tyler Kroft for his first NFL touchdown 🔥
— B/R Gridiron (@brgridiron) August 21, 2021
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Missing the services of Carl Lawson, and later losing starting linebacker Jarrad Davis, the Jets defense let up a 19-play, 81-yard drive that took over 10 minutes to complete and ended with Kurt Benkert finding Jace Sternberger for a five-yard touchdown score. But the Jets were able to give Wilson one last opportunity when Corey Ballentine’s 73-yard kick return put the Jets only 30 yards away from another touchdown.
Corey Ballentine showing the wheels! 73-yard kick return for the @nyjets!
— NFL (@NFL) August 21, 2021
Three plays later, Wilson earned his second score, once again finding Kroft for an 18-yard strike. Wilson gave Kroft a well-placed ball in the flat and Kroft did the rest. It was enough to give the Jets a 17-14 lead going into the halftime locker room.
Have a day Tyler Kroft — second TD of the day for the former Bills TE pic.twitter.com/b9VBCABjrX
— Marcel Louis-Jacques (@Marcel_LJ) August 21, 2021
The second half was a mostly placid affair with both teams emptying their benches. New York’s kicking situation, however, gained some clarity, as Ammendola converted each of his three attempts on the day. Defensively, Brandin Echols had an interception, while J.T. Hassell tallied a sack. Lamar Jackson would end the day and seal the victory with a leaping takeaway of Jake Dolegala.
— The Draft Network (@TheDraftNetwork) August 21, 2021
Matt Ammendola is GOOD from 54 yards out! @nyjets lead 3-0.
— NFL (@NFL) August 21, 2021
Michael Carter led the Jets in rushing with 52 yards on 10 carries.
The Jets will conclude their preseason slate on Friday night at MetLife Stadium, as they’ll resume their summer set with the Philadelphia Eagles (7:30 p.m. ET, WCBS).
Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffJMags