Joe Douglas 'very confident' about Zach Wilson's future: 'I saw a ton of growth from Zach this year'

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  • New York Jets
    New York Jets
    LiveTodayTomorrowvs--|
  • Zach Wilson
    Zach Wilson
    LiveTodayTomorrowvs--|
  • Joe Douglas
    American football executive
Jets Zach Wilson leans back to throw, white jersey solo
Jets Zach Wilson leans back to throw, white jersey solo

Asked on Monday if he was "100 percent confident" in Zach Wilson being the Jets' quarterback of the future after the conclusion of his rookie season, GM Joe Douglas spoke glowingly about the 22-year-old.

"I saw a ton of growth from Zach this year," Douglas told reporters. "I think it's difficult to be a rookie playing quarterback in this league. I know [Robert Saleh] has talked about it all season. I think the strides that you saw Zach make after coming back from the injury -- and on top of that, not always being in position to play with his starters at all the skill spots -- at wide receiver, at tight end, at running back. But to improve.

"To keep the team in contention late in these games a little undermanned -- and I think, on top of it, taking care of the football. I thought those were all very impressive things in the back half of the season. So I feel very confident about his development moving forward."

Wilson, who missed four games due to a PCL injury, also spent all but one game of the season behind an offensive line that was without one of its main cogs (Mekhi Becton), while having a receiving corps at his disposal that was pretty much never at full strength.

Despite the challenges, Wilson held his own while showing flashes of being the dynamic, game-changing quarterback the Jets hope he'll become.

Overall, Wilson completed 213 of 383 passes for 2,334 yards while tossing nine touchdowns and throwing 11 interceptions.

Turnovers were an issue for Wilson early on, but he did not turn the ball over at all during his last five games.

Jan 9, 2022; Orchard Park, New York, USA; New York Jets quarterback Zach Wilson (2) passes the ball against the Buffalo Bills during the first half at Highmark Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 9, 2022; Orchard Park, New York, USA; New York Jets quarterback Zach Wilson (2) passes the ball against the Buffalo Bills during the first half at Highmark Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Speaking on Sunday after the Jets' season-ending Week 18 loss to the Bills in Buffalo, Wilson discussed his rookie season.

"A lot of ups and downs, things I’m frustrated about, things I want back, but I really did just start feeling more comfortable as the year went on, and I feel like I learned a lot of things," Wilson said.

Added Wilson:

"I feel like the chemistry with the team and the guys around me, just elevating and just me understanding I gotta get them the ball and let playmakers make plays. I just think with time, it just got better. It’s gonna get better with more time.

"Take it into the offseason, obviously work on the things I need to work on – I’m excited for that. I’m excited to come back next year, I’m excited to work with these guys again, man, because we got a good group, and guys are hungry to win, and they’re gonna do everything they can."