Zach Wilson may be one of the most interesting storylines to follow this offseason because of his story, potential, and lackluster career to this point. The former BYU star has seen his ups and downs with the Jets in his three seasons in New York, with more downs than ups, but still some ups that make fans wonder….what if?
The issue with Wilson is that he has literally outplayed Patrick Mahomes and Josh Allen but has also been outplayed by high school quarterbacks, or at least it feels like that sometimes. Some are left wondering if the issue is on Zach Wilson or the Jets organization.
This past season, there was no shortage of drama between Wilson and the Jets. There were press conferences and rumors that the team had turned on Wilson. There were also moments where Wilson was saying one thing and the coaches were saying the exact opposite.
There is one thing clear. Zach Wilson wasn’t given a fair chance this past year. The offense was never his, and he was under so much scrutiny all the time that he could do five things right and be blamed for the one thing that went wrong.
It is essentially a forgone conclusion that Zach Wilson will be looking for a new team to call home next season. The only question is where. Here are three spots that could make a lot of sense.
1. Los Angeles Rams
This is the most obvious choice for a few reasons. First, Wilson seems like a Jordan Love kind of player. He has all the skills and potential to be a great star, but he was never given a chance to develop behind another quarterback.
Matthew Stafford is nearing the end of his career. Whether that means one more season of five, there is no denying that Stafford is lucky to still be playing at the level he is. In fact, only Aaron Rodgers and Joe Flacco have played longer than him, and Flacco may be done, or a season away from being done. Going into now his 16th season, Stafford may be realizing that his career is coming to the latter stages and wants to prepare the QB of the future.
Enter Zach Wilson.
Nobody can deny that Wilson can sling it, avoid a sack (enough), and has the speed to make a play with his legs if necessary. What he lacks is decision-making and composure. There are few players in the league that have better decision-making and composure in the pocket than Matthew Stafford, making him the perfect candidate.
Additionally, Wilson’s private QB, Coach John Beck, lives in California and would be readily available to help him out. And don’t take my word for it, former BYU legend and Super Bowl Champion Steve Young agrees.
— Mike Mushnick (@MikeMushnick) February 3, 2024
2. San Francisco 49ers
Out of college, the 49ers really wanted Zach Wilson. In fact, they traded up to the third pick to try to get him. Unfortunately, Wilson went second to the Jets and the 49ers took Trey Lance, who ended up being a bad decision. Luckily, the 49ers lucked out and had Mr. Irrelevant Brock Purdy who is doing just fine.
As of right now, Sam Darnold is the backup, with Brandon Allen as the third-string QB. There is no doubt that Wilson would take Allen’s place, and Darnold seems to be heading in the wrong direction overall. In other words, having a backup that at least has upside and potential seems to be in the 49er’s best interest.
Finally, the 49ers run a very similar offense to the style that Zach Wilson played at BYU with a lot of short passes to the outside and motion with a strong supporting run game. Wilson could thrive under this offensive scheme if something were to happen to Purdy, and let’s be honest, the 49ers fans are not nearly as ruthless as Jets fans at the first sign of things going south.
The only question is whether the team is still interested.
3. Minnesota Vikings
Similar to the Rams, the Vikings have an older quarterback (Kirk Cousins) and not a lot of depth behind him. The issue is that the Vikings aren’t in a great spot to draft a promising quarterback this season, and with Cousins’ recent injury issues, the team may be in the market to find a backup who has game experience.
The Vikings also run an offensive scheme that would be friendly to Zach Wilson’s play style, although not at the same level as the 49ers. With plenty of shallow and short passes to set up the long pass, Wilson’s accuracy could be threat and effective.
The biggest issue is that the Vikings may be looking for a more sure option after next season. Even Cousins is considered sort of a ‘gap’ quarterback until the team is able to get a ‘Top 5’ kind of player. Would they be willing to bring on another QB that is currently seen as a wildcard?
Zach Wilson is Just Looking for a Fair Shot
Zach Wilson brings a lot to the table, both negative and positive. The Jets historically have been known to be a QB graveyard where players are drafted, struggle, and end up doing nothing for the rest of their careers. The difference is Wilson is only going into his fourth season, meaning he still has a lot to give.
Wilson will find a team that wants to take a chance on him, and hopefully, this time, it will be a team that gives him a much better opportunity to excel.
Get More Football Content