The New York Jets arrive at their bye week as one of the biggest surprises in the NFL this season. However, Zach Wilson doesn’t quite agree with that assessment.
In fact, the Jets quarterback gave voice Monday to how the entire team feels about being in the thick of the AFC playoff race.
“For us, we expected to be here,” Wilson stated. The 23-year-old added, “we have something special.”
Zach Wilson and the Jets expected to be in playoff position at this point in the season: pic.twitter.com/oDdKKqa39Y
— Jets Videos (@snyjets) November 7, 2022
It’s hard to argue with Zach Wilson, or his coach Robert Saleh who provided a similar sentiment after the Jets upset the Buffalo Bills 20-17 on Sunday. The Jets are 6-3, a half game behind the Buffalo Bills for first in the AFC East. They’ve won five of their past six games and authored several thrilling comebacks in the first half of the season.
If the season ended today, the Jets would make the playoffs as a wild card. They have not reached the playoffs since the 2010 season. And they’ve had only one winning season in the past 11.
“The mindset we’ve had up to this point is taking it one game at a time,” Wilson explained. “So, let’s do the exact same thing. Let’s not put any expectations on ourselves. Let’s just play good, clean football … and it’ll take care of itself.”
The Jets are 5-1 with Wilson as the starting quarterback. He missed the first three games following knee surgery. Their one victory without him was in Week 2 when Joe Flacco engineered an improbable fourth-quarter comeback on the road against the Cleveland Browns.
That resiliency has continued with Wilson in the lineup. In fact, Wilson proved his mettle with a terrific performance against the Bills (18-25, 154 yards, 1 TD, 101.1 QB rating; five rushes, 24 yards). That came a week after his three interceptions buried New York in a 22-17 home loss to the New England Patriots.
Wilson sounded like a veteran leader Monday with a message of how the Jets will approach the bye week.
“We’re excited but we know there’s a lot of work that needs to be done,” Wilson furthered. “Guys are taking this bye week very seriously in terms of where we need to be when we get back.”
Wilson will head home to Utah for some R&R this week. Then he and his confident teammates will return to play the New England Patriots in Week 11, and continue a path that has shocked those outside of the Jets locker room but not those inside.