FLORHAM PARK, N.J. — After sitting out the first three games with a preseason knee injury, quarterback Zach Wilson He has been medically cleared and will start Sunday for the New York Jets, coach Robert Saleh announced Wednesday.
Wilson, who has practiced on a limited basis for the past two weeks, is expected to take full practice reps when he returns – a road game against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Pending confirmation from Wilson’s Los Angeles doctor, Saleh hoped that would be the outcome.
Saleh said Wilson will start “absolutely” assuming he gets through the week of practice.
“He’s very comfortable,” Saleh said. “He’s in a very good state of mind. He’s comfortable where he is physically.”
The former BYU star, who was drafted second overall in 2021, tore his meniscus and suffered a bone bruise on a non-contact play in the first preseason game. In the year On August 16, he underwent arthroscopic surgery on his right knee in Los Angeles, performed by Dr. Neil Elatrach.
Initially, it was thought to be a two-to-four week recovery, but the Jets announced on Sept. 7 — four days before the opener — that Wilson would be back as early as Week 4.
The Jets went 1-2 without Wilson Joe Flacco Leading them to a stunning comeback victory over the Cleveland Browns in Week 2. Flacco is fifth in passing yards (901), but has led the offense to just five touchdowns in three games, including two in Cleveland’s last 1:22 miracle.
“It’s exciting to have him back out there,” Saleh said. “But at the same time, it’s not all about Zach. We’re making sure to execute on all cylinders.”
Wilson returned to a unit that struggled to protect the passer — allowing nine sacks. Left baking George Fant (Knee) was placed on injured reserve Tuesday, which means career backup. Connor McDermott Maybe he can get a nod in his place. McDermott, who was re-signed after being cut at the end of the preseason, struggled mightily in last week’s 27-12 loss to the Cincinnati Bengals.
Saleh said the unsettled situation in the crisis caused him no hesitation in returning to Wilson.
“The energy is 100 percent,” Saleh said. “As for the solutions, we’ve got all the confidence in the world in the guys we have. [Mitchell] He’s playing really well, and McDermott has played a lot of good football.
The Jets will face a Pittsburgh defense known for impressive pressure packages, but it just wasn’t the same without an elite pass-rusher. TJ Watt (torn hamstring muscle), posted on IR September 15. The Steelers are 0-6 without Watt, dating back to his rookie season in 2017.