NFL Future Watch: Zach Wilson Has Star Qualities – Two ingredients to be successful in the hobby and the New York Metro area, have a big personality and back that up with raw talent. Jets quarterback Zach Wilson checks off those boxes.

The Jets selected him second overall in the 2021 NFL Draft and that created expectations right from the get-go. Wilson starred at Brigham Young University. He played there for three years with some outstanding results. Wilson started 28 out of 30 games there. He did sit for a while and then became the youngest freshman to start a game back in 2018. He threw 12 touchdowns against three interceptions.

In three seasons, Wilson had 55 touchdowns and 15 interceptions. This prospect ran for 15 touchdowns as well. Wilson threw for 7,652 yards, and in 2020 he broke out. The Draper, Utah native finished eighth in the Heisman voting, plus a Manning Award Finalist and Walter Camp Player of the Year Semifinalist.

The knock on Wilson was he played an easy schedule, and his school had a stacked offensive line, so he had time to throw. That’s easy to debunk since he was sacked 58 times and 23 times in his rookie season. Talk is cheap, players earn their respect on the field.

Going into Jets training camp, there was a lot of buzz, as there should be. But with so many changes in coaching and players, there is going to be a learning curve for Wilson to start feeling comfortable. That’s not uncommon for rookie quarterbacks, Patrick Mahomes struggled in training camp, and Peyton Manning didn’t have a great rookie season. It happens, but the Jets are being smart and letting Wilson play and be given the opportunity to make those mistakes which are very important for his continued development.

Wilson is the Jets starter. He has no quarterback competition, and preseason snaps will be important for him and the team. His maturity on and off the field is admirable, and his belief in winning is infectious. Players already believe he is a leader and has talked about it since training camp started.

Wilson can throw 55 yards in the air with great ease. That’s a young, strong throwing arm that a lot of quarterbacks don’t possess. Wilson has worn some headbands with messages on them. We first saw a young Jim McMahon do that when he was on the Chicago Bears. He used to get fined for that, but Wilson is doing it in practice and surely knows he can’t do that on game day.

His pocket awareness and mobility will soon excite Jets fans and MetLife Stadium. Wilson just turned 22. He’s going to be compared to other quarterbacks from his draft class. He seems ready for that and a lot more. Collectors should go all-in with him. One of these years the Jets are going to draft the right quarterback for their franchise and Wilson could be that guy. If he is, his cards will skyrocket along with his popularity.

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