In Wilson’s seven starts so far this season, he has only completed 105 passes out of 189 attempts, and has totaled four touchdown passes and five interceptions. He’s led the Jets to a 5–2 record in his starts.
Griffin noted that another current NFL quarterback has posted similar statistics but has been receiving “adoration” instead of criticism like Wilson has. This quarterback is Commanders’ Taylor Heinicke, who has started in five games while starter Carson Wentz is out.
Heinicke has completed 90 of 148 pass attempts for five touchdowns and four interceptions. In five games, he’s led the team to a 4–1 record.
Griffin said the main difference between these two quarterbacks is that Wilson was the second overall pick in last year’s draft, so there’s more pressure on him to perform well, while Heinicke was an undrafted player and the expectations of him aren’t as high.
The former quarterback posted a nine-tweet thread on Wednesday, which can be fully read here. At one point, he highlighted the major difference in the narratives regarding the two quarterbacks.
“While [coach Robert] Saleh is benching Wilson for poor play, [coach] Ron Rivera said Heinicke doesn’t have to play good to keep the job because the whole team plays better when he starts even if he isn’t,” Griffin said. “YOU NEVER HEAR THAT IN THE NFL. Only Winning matters for Heinicke but not Wilson.
“Wilson gets no credit from Saleh for the play of the Jet’s defense but Heinicke gets credit from Rivera for the play of the entire Washington team,” Griffin continued. “Rivera says, ‘There is just something special about Taylor Heinicke’ and everyone else says, ‘What’s wrong with Zach Wilson?’”
Griffin even added statistics to show how the two quarterbacks aren’t performing all that different despite the narratives around them majorly contrasting.
“Heinicke is given credit for beating the Eagles despite completing 58.6% of his passes with an int[erception] and a 66.9 QB rating,” Griffin wrote. “You can dislike Wilson’s play and his post game comments and still understand the discrepancy in the reaction to a QB with similar results.
“High Draft picks get more scrutiny, that’s just the reality,” Griffin continued. “Whether you think this discrepancy is justified or not is up to you. I would argue Wilson should be given more time to figure it out because he was a high draft pick and is 5-2 as the starter.”
And, Wilson will get some more time to prove his capabilities after his benching ends. It’s unknown when the quarterback will return, but Saleh noted that his time on the team is “not over.”
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