With less than one week to go until the 2021 NFL Draft, the New York Jets selecting BYU quarterback Zach Wilson with the second overall pick seems like a foregone conclusion.
Every major analyst on this side of the planet has prognosticated it and on April 29 that dream will likely become a reality.
In the buildup to draft weekend, there has been a lot of hype around some of the top prospects in this class. Perhaps none more so than what transpired on Twitter on Thursday, April 22 when NFL insider Benjamin Allbright spoke with a prominent offensive coordinator about this year’s batch of rookie quarterbacks.
One interesting nugget that should pique the interest of Jets fans was the coach’s feelings toward Wilson, whom he was so confident about that he was willing to “bet his job” on the 21-year-old winning a Super Bowl at some point during his pro career.
Asked a prominent OC in the league who the smartest football IQ QBs were (Lance/Jones), best deep ball (Fields/Lance), safest bets (Lawrence/Jones), biggest risk (Lance), guy he’d bet his job on winning a SB: (Wilson)
— Benjamin Allbright (@AllbrightNFL) April 22, 2021
It’s not quite a Joe Namath-esque guarantee, but it’s pretty darn close.
Other League Executives Speaking Highly of Wilson
Speaking of Super Bowls, the Jets haven’t appeared in one in over half a century. Although if you take the optimistic point of view, they’re one-for-one on football’s biggest stage. On the other side of the coin, 12 NFL teams have never hoisted a Lombardi Trophy while four others haven’t even participated in the big game.
Expectations are always high for first-round draft picks, especially those who play the quarterback position in the New York market. Fortunately for Gang Green, the anonymous coordinator isn’t the only person in league circles who is super high on Wilson as a prospect either.
NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero featured a few noteworthy quotes from personnel staffers in his latest NFL Draft column for NFL.com.
“Zach Wilson’s may be the best I’ve ever seen,” said one general manager who attended Wilson’s Pro Day at BYU. “And his arm is ridiculous.”
“If I was picking No. 1 — hoo, man, it’d be hard for me not to take him over Trevor,” an AFC quarterbacks coach said. “He’s got real playmaking ability. He’s shorter (than Lawrence) — I get it. But he’s got ball all about him. He makes plays — unique plays.”
Initially, when the Jets won a few seemingly meaningless games over the Los Angeles Rams and Cleveland Browns at the end of the 2020 season, it seemed like the team screwed itself in the 2021 NFL Draft.
The prized gem all season was Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence. In many respects, the narrative was “Lawrence or bust” for the green and white. But fast forward a few months later and Jets fans have bought in on a different gunslinger ahead of Thursday night’s first round live from Cleveland, Ohio.
Wilson & Jets Set to Make History on Draft Night
Wilson will become the highest-drafted football player in BYU history if and when he’s selected by the Jets with the second overall pick. While the team itself will also be making history at the same exact time.
If the Jets draft Wilson, they’ll become the first team in the modern draft era (since 1970) to select two quarterbacks among the top three picks over a four-year span.
Wilson will have a front row seat as one of 13 players expected to be in attendance on draft night, per ESPN’s Adam Schefter.