The New York Jets continue to face struggles in putting together a full-time quarterback. Zach Wilson will miss his fourth straight game this Sunday due to his knee injury. Mike White, the team’s backup starter, is facing scrutiny after a rough outing last week.
White’s four-interception outing against the Buffalo Bills Sunday led to a humiliating 45-16 loss. The Jets are now 2-7 on the season, dashing any hopes of a potential postseason run. Now, rather than use the struggling backup QB White, the Jets’ head coach Robert Saleh has decided to start Joe Flacco in Sunday’s game against Miami.
Joe Flacco hasn’t started for the Jets since November 22, 2020, when he stepped in for injured QB Sam Darnold. His first time on the field in 2021 came during Sunday’s game against the Bills. In one drive, Flacco strung together three pass completions and threw a touchdown, impressing fans.
Saleh maintains that he’s not just picking Flacco for that one impressive outing, though. “Joe’s got a history,” the head coach told reporters. “He’s in the record books all over the place. He’s a world champion, so he’s got a history of playing good ball. One drive didn’t solidify anything; it’s his history more than anything. He’s seen these types of defenses many times over.”
Saleh went on, explaining his reasoning. “There’s a young group that’s playing its butts off, and it’s just a chance to get the chains moving and get the ball to our guys. Just like Mike proved, if you can get the ball to our guys, they can do a lot of damage with it. In this situation, where you’re seeing a very complex defense, we feel like Joe can get the ball to those guys.”
While White hasn’t put up impressive numbers, his teammates and Jets fans have commented on his enthusiasm. Saleh’s decision to bench White ahead of Sunday’s game is controversial for fans because the team is rebuilding. Some have called on Saleh to start White to give the young player more time on the field in preparation for future seasons.
Flacco, meanwhile, hasn’t impressed fans in his last six starts. The last time Joe Flacco led his team to a victory as a starting QB was in October 2019, when the Denver Broncos took a 16-0 win off the Tennessee Titans.
Sunday’s game against Miami will test Flacco’s mobility. Last week, the Dolphins’ defense stymied the Ravens’ star QB, Lamar Jackson. Baltimore’s offense couldn’t stop the Dolphins from sacking Jackson four times, leading to a 22-10 Miami victory.