The Jets will proceed forward without Rodgers, and former No. 2 overall pick Zach Wilson — the same player who once guaranteed he’d make any veteran replacement’s life “hell” — will step into the starting role. Wilson has had the benefit of learning from Rodgers while taking backup reps behind him during training camp. Now, that practice will be tested.
“Yeah, I’m very confident in Zach, and I think he’s confident in himself, which is the most important thing,” Rodgers said. “It was an important offseason for him, very important I think to get his confidence back and be able to work on some of the little fundamental things that I think you’ve seen show up in the preseason and obviously the other night on Monday. But, I mean truly I was hoping he could have a couple years to sit back and relax, but that’s how this life goes sometimes, it throws you some curveballs.
“Neither of us thought that that’s what was going to happen on Monday, obviously, he hugged each other before the game, said ‘I love you,’ and said he said ‘Can’t wait to watch you play out there,’ and I was the one watching him play after the fourth play, but I’m excited for him, he’s a great kid, I’m pulling for him, I’ll be talking to him.”
There’s no telling how this Jets season might go after losing Rodgers. But he expects to remain involved with the team, even if he can’t be down on the sideline for a while. And he’ll do so hoping his efforts help the Jets return to the postseason — even if he can’t be the one leading them there.