Jets quarterback and No. 2 pick Zach Wilson was not present at the facility Wednesday for the first full-team training camp practice.
We’ve been hearing a ton about offset language the last day or so. Within an NFL contract, offset language prevents a team from needing to pay a player the full amount it originally owed him if that player is cut and signs with another team.
An apparent disagreement over this concept is what’s delaying the signing of quarterback Zach Wilson‘s rookie contract. Because of this, the No. 2 overall pick isn’t present at Jets training camp and wasn’t on the field for the organization’s first full-team practice Wednesday.
Wilson will be fine at some point, but still has a lot to learn at such a young age and must be practicing sooner than later.
So when does he need to be present with his new team?
“Ask me again tomorrow,” head coach Robert Saleh responded Wednesday, per SNY’s Ralph Vacchiano.
Asked when QB Zach Wilson absolutely needs to be in training camp, Robert Saleh said “Ask me again tomorrow.”
— Ralph Vacchiano (@RVacchianoSNY) July 28, 2021
This doesn’t provide the most amount of context, but is it a little bit of a pivot from the vibe Saleh gave off Tuesday? On that day, the newly hired Jets coach noted he had faith in general manager Joe Douglas and that they would “see what happens in the next couple of hours.”
#Jets coach Robert Saleh said he believes every player other than rookie QB Zach Wilson has reported.
As for getting Wilson signed and in camp, Saleh didn’t sound concerned. “I have a lot of faith in Joe (Douglas). Let’s see what happens in the next couple of hours.” pic.twitter.com/sPOIjqUJTV
— Dennis Waszak Jr. (@DWAZ73) July 27, 2021
If Saleh is saying “in the next couple of hours” on Tuesday, and then “ask me again tomorrow” on Wednesday, could that mean the contract discussions aren’t reaching the finish line?
Of course I’m speculating, and at this point, Jets fans shouldn’t be panicking. Their new quarterback will be on the field soon enough in preparation for the team’s Week 1 matchup with Carolina.
But I would be lying if I said every second doesn’t count. Wilson must build a rapport with his offensive weapons and continue to learn offensive coordinator Mike LaFleur’s system. Being away from the team, even for a practice or two, isn’t productive whatsoever.