zach wilson jets
Troy Taormina | USA TODAY Sports

Zach Wilson returned to the field Sunday after a four-game absence due to a PCL sprain.

Zach Wilson was back Sunday, but it nearly came at a cost.

The rookie Jets quarterback, after missing Weeks 8-11 with a PCL sprain, limped to the sideline in the final quarter of the team’s 21-14 win over Houston. It was obviously a “hold your breath” type of moment for the organization and its fanbase.

The first-year player eventually returned and finished out the victory though, and on Monday, head coach Robert Saleh assured Zach will not experience limitations moving forward.

“There’s no limitations to what he’s going to be able to do with regards to running, dropping back, boots, all that stuff,” Saleh told the Associated Press’ Dennis Waszak and the rest of the media. “So, obviously, he took a pretty good hit on the sideline and he felt it, but when he got to the sideline, there was, from my understanding, a little bit of pain. Pain went away, felt good, he wanted to get back on the field, we got him back on the field and he helped us win a football game.”

Wilson sitting out four consecutive games was not the situation many originally believed would occur.


There was speculation he would return for the Week 10 matchup with Buffalo or at least in Week 11 against the Dolphins. The big picture needed to be taken into consideration though given he’s the hopeful long-term franchise quarterback.

Despite the lengthy absence, Wilson’s urge to compete never faded.

“He’s tough as nails. He was trying to play Buffalo, he was trying to play in the Miami game, and we wanted him to take the extra couple of weeks to let him get his knee to full health,” Saleh told ESPN’s Rich Cimini and other media members. “Even in the game, he’s not going to be denied. If he has a chance to play, he wants to play. His grit and his toughness and his desire to get better are pretty darn high in terms of just how hard he works at it.”

Against a putrid Texans team, Zach completed 14 of 24 throws for 145 yards, zero touchdowns, and one interception (his tenth of the season). He also crossed the goal line for his first career touchdown run.

It wasn’t an ideal performance from the rookie, but patience must be implemented — the young quarterback just came off a multi-week injury and might need time to, once again, get accustomed to the speed of the professional game.

Follow Ryan Honey on Twitter: @RyanHoneyESNY

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Ryan Honey is a senior NFL analyst, betting writer, and podcaster for Elite Sports NY. He hosts the Wide Right Podcast, which serves as both a New York Giants podcast and sports betting show.