Skip to main content

Jets' Mike White Named Starter for Next Week Moments After Win Over Bengals

New York Jets QB Mike White was named the starting quarterback for Thursday Night Football against the Indianapolis Colts after beating the Cincinnati Bengals with an unforgettable performance.

Mike White did more than just lead the Jets to a stunning victory over the Bengals on Sunday. The backup quarterback also secured another start as rookie Zach Wilson continues to work his way back from a knee injury.

Just moments after New York's dramatic and shocking 34-31 victory over Cincinnati, Jets head coach Robert Saleh was asked about Gang Green's quarterback situation and whether or not White will be starting on Thursday night.

"Yeah, he's starting Thursday," Saleh told reporters, cracking a huge smile.

White erupted for 405 passing yards on Sunday, throwing for three touchdowns. It's hard to believe, since he looked like a veteran quarterback, but it was White's first career start in the NFL, a culmination of an arduous journey to this point in his career.

READ: Mike White Reflects on Winding Journey to First NFL Start

The 26-year-old said that whether he starts or not, he's going to do everything in his power to help the team and own the role that he is given.

"My mindset right now is execute the job that is given to me," White said. "Whether that is I'm playing on Thursday, if Zach is coming back, that's out of my control. My job is to attack everyday in whatever role I am in."

RECOMMENDED ARTICLES

Wilson is expected to miss one to three more weeks with his sprained PCL. Even with the addition of veteran Joe Flacco via trade a few days ago, White proved that he's the best option on this roster, silencing doubters that criticized his lack of experience. 

Perhaps New York didn't even need to go out and trade for Flacco. White played like a starter against Cincinnati, taking what the defense gave him, starting fast and completing 37 of his 45 passes against one of the better defenses in the league.

It's early, and more will be said about New York's next game in the coming days, but White will be challenged if he's under center in Indianapolis. It's a short week and the Colts have a strong defense, a unit that allowed just 21.3 points per game entering play on Sunday.

"There's a lot of happy guys in that locker room, but it's a quick turnaround," White said. "Use the rest of the day to celebrate—as we should, it was a great team victory—but it's a short week so we've got to be able to move on tomorrow and get ready for the Colts."

As for whether or not White can secure the starting role going forward, even after Wilson returns from his injury, Saleh said anything is possible. New York brought Wilson in to play and develop into the franchise quarterback they believe he can become, so that would be very unlikely, but the head coach certainly didn't rule it out.

"We'll go day-to-day but anything is possible," he said. "It goes back to that whole theory of the difference between Player A and Player Z is an opportunity and reps. That's what this league is. That's professional sports. That's why they come out of nowhere. Someone gets an opportunity. What Mike does with his opportunity, he's got the world in front of him, he's just got to take advantage of it."

Follow Max Goodman on Twitter (@MaxTGoodman), be sure to bookmark Jets Country and check back daily for news, analysis and more.