With starting QB Zach Wilson set to miss a few weeks with an ankle injury, the New York Jets have traded for Philadelphia Eagles QB Joe Flacco for insurance.
They reacquired Joe Flacco in a trade with the Philadelphia Eagles. It cost the Jets a 2022 sixth-round conditional pick, which can improve to a fifth-round pick based on playing time for Flacco.
Wilson was hit by Matthew Judon in the second quarter of the Jets-Patriots matchup in Foxborough, and would lay on the turf for several minutes before eventually getting up and walking to the sideline. The Jets later confirmed Wilson has a Grade 2 PCL sprain and is expected to miss two to four weeks.
Here’s the injury to Zach Wilson, doesn’t look goodpic.twitter.com/c7q5AurFXw— Dov Kleiman (@NFL_DovKleiman) October 24, 2021
Prior to accruing Falco the Jets had 2 options. Mike White, who replaced Wilson in the second quarter of Sunday’s 54-13 blowout loss to the New England Patriots, is poised to start Sunday against the Cincinnati Bengals.
However, White has no starting experience; his NFL debut was Sunday. The former Dallas Cowboys 2018 fifth-round pick completed 20-of-32 passes for 202 yards, with one touchdown and two interceptions.
The Jets’ other option was to promote journeyman Josh Johnson from the practice squad, but he hasn’t played in a game since 2018.
With Wilson set to miss at least 2 games it was important to have a seasoned QB in case White was injured or performed poorly. In addition to simply being insurance, Flacco can impart his wealth of experience onto the rookie Wilson. Afterall, the 36-year old was a Super Bowl MVP and Champion with the Baltimore Ravens.
Coach Robert Saleh said there’s a “possibility” that Wilson could play Nov. 14 against the Buffalo Bills.
Hours before the trade was finalized, Saleh gushed about his confidence in White.
“He’s a very calm man,” Saleh said. “He’s a great communicator, he’s got great command of the huddle. He’s got great command of the offense. He understands progression reads and how to go through a progression, get the ball where it needs to go. He understands how to slide in the pocket to throw instead of slide in the pocket to run. He doesn’t panic.”
Flacco, who signed a one-year, $3.5 million contract with the Eagles, didn’t see any game action. Jalen Hurts has played every snap in seven starts. Philadelphia are already stacked in the quarter back room with former Jacksonville Jaguars starter Gardner Minshew on the bench and then claimed quarterback Reid Sinnett off of waivers from the Dolphins on Monday, so they likely felt Flacco was expendable.Embed from Getty Images
“Joe is just a great person to be around, a great pro to be around, had a phenomenal preseason and was really good for our [QB] room,” Eagles coach Nick Sirianni said. “But the opportunity arose for him to go and be able to contribute somewhere else and also for us to get a pick for that. But our time with Joe Flacco was really good.”
Their have been some doubts wether Hurts is the right person to lead Philadelphia through their much needed rebuild, but head coach Sirianni seems to have plenty of confidence.
Sirianni also was asked if he would consider sitting Hurts to take a look at Minshew as the starter. He said, “No.” And then followed up by saying, “No, obviously I really like Gardner and I think he’s a good backup but I have a ton of faith in Jalen and he will be our starting quarterback.”
The Jets had some interest in re-signing Flacco at the start of free agency, but they opted not to bring in any experienced backupsEmbed from Getty Images
Flacco served as Sam Darnold’s primary backup last season, starting four games when Darnold went down with a shoulder injury. The Jets lost all four, as Flacco struggled in three of the four. His best game was a 262-yard, three-touchdown performance in a prime-time defeat against the New England Patriots.
Overall, Flacco completed 74-of-134 passes for 864 yards, with six touchdowns and three interceptions last season.