Jets' Robert Saleh breaks down what he wants to see from QB Zach Wilson during OTAs

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Zach Wilson throws at Jets rookie camp
Zach Wilson throws at Jets rookie camp

With OTAs well underway in Florham Park, Jets new head coach Robert Saleh is having fun learning each and every one of his players and getting everyone acclimated to the new schemes and systems that he wishes to implement in Year 1.

That goes for rookie QB Zach Wilson as well, the Jets’ No. 2 overall pick that has already completed a rookie minicamp. Now, Wilson is surrounded by the rest of his veteran teammates and those he’ll be interacting with the most heading into training camp and the regular season.

So what does Saleh want to see from his new signal caller in this first taste of full NFL practices?

“For him, it’s more about acclimating himself to the offense and the verbiage, going through his progressions and learning his teammates,” Saleh told reporters on Thursday via Zoom. “A lot of it is new for a lot of guys. We got a very young offense. A very young defense for that matter. This is the first time that they’re hearing everything. Minicamp we’ll re-hit the reset button and they’ll hear it again. Training camp for a third time.

“You just really want to see him get better and focus on getting better every day. Learning the system and getting it to the point that it’s second nature to him.”

Saleh said that he’s been immediately impressed by what he’s seen physically from the BYU product thus far.

“He looks good. His arm is live, you guys will see it today,” he said. “Gets the ball in and out of his hands pretty quickly. He’s been a good decision maker, all that stuff.

“There’s going to be ebbs and flows with him, but we’re really excited about when he’s throwing the football.”

Even though OTAs are just run-throughs to get players ready for training camp and real practices, Wilson’s spotlight will continue to burn bright. And Saleh certainly knows that.

But Wilson is doing the necessary work now to be fully prepared for when the pads go on and the speed of practices – and eventually his first taste of the NFL in preseason games – begins.

“He’s relentless in terms of his want for knowledge, in terms of studying. What is interesting when he’s watching tape is the things that he’s able to pick up and recognize on tape.”

Saleh loving the MSG Knicks hype

If you want a true feel of what New York fans are capable of, go to a Knicks playoff game. That’s exactly what Saleh did on Wednesday night in the Knicks’ Game 2 win over the Hawks to even the series, and he said he couldn’t have imagined his first trip to The Mecca any better.

“It was awesome. Obviously, the Garden lived up to its reputation. From an outsider looking in, all you hear about is it’s the Garden and it was awesome.

"New York fans are extremely passionate. They love their home teams."

No veteran CB coming – at least not now

The Jets’ cornerbacks group is a very young bunch with a ton of questions marks, but Saleh said the team isn’t looking into any veteran additions right now. They’d rather see what they could have at the moment before making any moves. That’s what OTAs are for.

“There’s a lot of work to be had,” Saleh admitted. “They’re young, they’re big, and they’ve got great mental demeanor. They got great intent. They want to learn, they want to do good. And we got a lot of time. The easy answer right now is to bring in a veteran, but a veteran will just eat up reps and not give us the ability to look at these young guys who are just starving for an opportunity.”

“Right now, the focus is completely on the guys we have. We’re excited about the group that we have, we really are. We’re excited to work with them.”