After the team’s 10-3 loss against the Patriots last weekend, wide receiver Garrett Wilson had some thoughts on the Jets offense.
“I apologize,” Wilson said. “We are here to seek forgiveness. We know we’re not sorry, so we know it hurts a lot.
“We know we’re better than this, and that’s why it hurts. That’s why it upsets me, because we can do more.”
Wilson may have been right, because against the Bears on Sunday, the Jets’ offense didn’t look out of place.
Gang Green finished with 466 yards and was 7 of 12 on third downs in a 31-10 win against the Chicago Bears Sunday. The Jets also rushed for 158 yards and averaged 4.9 yards per carry. The Jets quarterback was the notable difference.
Mike White started in place of Zach Wilson, who was benched after completing 9 of 22 passes for 77 yards against the Patriots, and had the best game of any Green and White quarterback this season. He completed 22 of 28 passes for 315 yards and three touchdowns without once turning the ball over.
Wilson himself also had a big day as he caught five passes for 95 yards and two touchdowns. After Sunday’s game, Wilson said he meant no harm to anyone by expressing his feelings because he felt the people in the Jets locker room were happy he expressed his feelings.
“I’m human and I’m emotional,” Wilson said. “We didn’t live up to our standards.
“When it happens, I take responsibility, but I just want to see change, and that’s what came out of it. We know what we have in this room and we know what we are capable of. As a receiving room, we put that on ourselves, and that’s the type of mindset we have to have if we want to go where we want to be.”
Wilson wasn’t the only receiver who was frustrated with the Jets’ offense this season. Elijah Moore requested a trade last month after his role declined with Zach Wilson under center. Against the Packers on Oct. 16, Moore was never targeted and expressed his displeasure on Twitter hours after the game.
Later that week, Moore reportedly got into an altercation with Jets offensive coordinator Mike LaFleur and was sent home, later being held for the team’s next game in Denver.
After being sent home after the game against the Broncos, Moore has been quiet, but his role in the offense hasn’t changed much. In the three games leading up to Sunday, Moore caught two passes for 17 yards while being targeted five times.
That changed on Sunday, when Moore had his most notable game of the 2022 season. He caught just two passes for 64 yards, but both were big.
Moore registered a 42-yard reception in the second quarter that set up the Jets for a field goal. Then on third down, Moore caught a 22-yard touchdown pass that put Gang Green up 24-10.
After Moore’s first touchdown of the season, he had a big smile as he walked to the sideline. After the game, Moore’s teammates chanted, “Free the man, free the E” and “Free the E.”
“I just kept my head down,” Moore said of the situation. “At the end of the day, everyone has to go through something and this is my story. I’m just grateful that it will be written that way. We’ve got one more game, we’ve got another week, and I’m ready to give it my all this week.
“Whether we scored or not, I was happy to be part of the win and it’s nice to win. I’m proud of everyone, we did our job and it paid off.”
A good quarterback is like a point guard in basketball because he knows how to pass the ball around and make everyone better. Not only did White hit Wilson and Moore in the right spots where they could take advantage for touchdowns, but he also kept the rest of the team’s offense going throughout the game.
White completed passes to 10 different receivers. That’s something no other Jets quarterback has done this season.
With the Jets defense ranked in the top 10 in stats this year, the team is looking for consistent play from the quarterback position, and that’s what White gave them all game long. At 7-4, the Jets would be in the playoffs if the postseason started today.
The Jets have tough tests against the Vikings and Bills in the coming weeks. But the team seems to be responding well to White’s presence and demeanor in the huddle, and that could give him confidence heading into the second part of the season.
“He does a really good job,” Jets coach Robert Saleh said. “He gets rid of the ball. He gets it where it needs to go.
“I thought our O-Line did a good job protecting him. When he needed to be aggressive, he was aggressive.
“Every time you succeed, there is reinforcement. I don’t think there’s a guy in the locker room who didn’t think he could perform today.”