FLORHAM PARK, N.J. (ABC4 Sports) – The Zach Wilson era has officially begun.
The former BYU quarterback and second overall pick in the NFL Draft completed his first NFL rookie mini-camp this past weekend, and his knowledge of the game impressed head coach Robert Saleh.
“He’s a young man that loves football,” Saleh said. “To have Zach, your quarterback, have that mindset where he’s just always trying to find a way to get better, it’s awesome. But it’s something we want to see out of every single one of our guys.”
Wilson was just happy to be back on the field, albeit with just the rookies.
“It’s fun to get back to playing ball,” said Wilson, who wore #2 for the Jets. “I’m just getting used to the differences from college to the NFL. Obviously learning all the new plays, getting used to throwing to different guys, and the speed of the game is a little bit different.”
Although he’s most likely going to be the opening day starter, Wilson isn’t taking the job for granted. He knows he has to win it.
“Obviously that’s important, but that’s not my focus right now,” said Wilson, who accounted for 43 touchdowns his senior season at BYU. “My focus is to learn the offense and keep getting better every single day. I think the rest takes care of itself. The coaches want to play the best player, and that position has got to be earned.”
Wilson said the Jets run a similar West Coast style offense that BYU ran, but the terminology is different, and he’ll spend the next several months learning.
“I can go in the film room and be able to grind and try to learn the offense as quick as I can,” he said. “But I don’t have any more pressure on myself to do more than I’m supposed to. Simplify my reads, make quick decisions, get the ball out of my hands and let the playmakers around me make the plays.”
From Provo to the Big Apple, Wilson said the bright lights of New York City won’t be a distraction, especially since the Jets headquarters are in the suburbs of New Jersey.
“This area is not a city lifestyle,” Wilson said. “If you want the city, you’re close by. You can hop on a train or drive down about an hour. But it’s cool we’re in the suburbs. It’s an easy place to focus on football. I’m excited to be here. My family didn’t come out with me this time, but they’ll find some time to come out and check out the area. It’s kind of crazy how fast your life can change, but it’s on to the next challenge.”