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Former Second-Overall Pick Skips Practices As Trade Talks Loom

New York Jets quarterback Zach Wilson skipped voluntary team practices as he and the team prepare for a trade.
Zach Wilson Trade

The 2021 quarterback draft class was supposed to be one of the best in recent memory. Fast forward a few years and three of the five passers selected in the top 15 have all left their teams for minimal returns, and a fourth is right behind them. The New York Jets will inevitably trade Zach Wilson during the 2024 NFL Draft, and they’ll probably have to settle for a late-round pick swap. After three seasons of subpar play, the Jets have finally had enough. With Aaron Rodgers healthy and Tyrod Taylor locked in as the backup quarterback, Wilson has no future with this organization.

The BYU product is aware of this fact, as he recently skipped voluntary practices. This is nothing more than a formality, as both Zach Wilson and the Jets do not want him suffering an injury and tanking what little trade value he currently has. Owner Woody Johnson insists that the quarterback is an asset, but all on-field and off-field evidence suggests this is the end of the road.

Zach Wilson Skips Practices As Trade Rumors Heat Up

The quarterback trade market is not what it used to be. Historically speaking, teams have been willing to give up fourth- or fifth-round picks for early-round draft picks in hopes of revitalizing their career. Last year, for instance, the Dallas Cowboys gave up a fourth-round pick for Trey Lance. Unfortunately for the Jets, it’s hard to envision them getting that type of return in a Zach Wilson trade.

Both Mac Jones and Justin Fields have shown more promise than Wilson, and their teams were only able to get a 2024 sixth-round pick and a 2025 conditional 2025 fourth-round pick, respectively. Based on this market, the Jets can’t expect to get anything more than a conditional sixth- or seventh-round pick in a Zach Wilson trade.

Despite the low return, some teams will probably still decide to roll the dice on Wilson. While his raw skills have not translated to the professional level, he has the raw potential to stick around in the NFL. In no particular order, these four teams could be interested in a Zach Wilson trade.

Possible Trade Destinations

Los Angeles Rams

The Los Angeles Rams love reclamation projects. Over the past two seasons, the team has brought in Baker Mayfield following his failed stint in Carolina and Carson Wentz after three disastrous seasons. Zach Wilson could be the next player on this assembly line, as the trade target has some decent untapped potential. With Jimmy Garoppolo handling primary backup work, Wilson can spend the year on the bench while honing his craft.

Los Angeles Chargers

Justin Herbert is the unquestioned franchise quarterback in Los Angeles, but they could use a better backup. Easton Stick did the best he could in relief of Herbert last year, but the team needs a better option should injury strike again. Seeing as he’ll cost next to nothing on the trade market, quarterback guru Jim Harbaugh might as well see if he can fix the BYU prospect.

Kansas City Chiefs

The Chiefs have Carson Wentz on the roster in the event Patrick Mahomes has to miss a week or two of action. However, they could still use a third developmental quarterback on the roster. Zach Wilson has the raw traits to be great, and Andy Reid’s scheme is arguably the most quarterback-friendly in the league. If Wilson can’t figure it out here, then he won’t ever put it all together.

New Orleans Saints

The Saints are currently stuck in quarterback purgatory with Derek Carr, so they might as well shoot for the stars and trade for Zach Wilson. The team reportedly believes in developmental quarterback Jake Haener, but if there’s room on this roster for Nathan Peterman, then they can find a way to sneak Wilson onto the roster.

Main Photo: Vincent Carchietta – USA Today Sports


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