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Jets' Zach Wilson Is Learning From This NFL Legend Before Facing Eagles

New York Jets quarterback Zach Wilson watched film this week of how Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady performed against the Philadelphia Eagles.

The NFL is a copycat league and what better quarterback for Zach Wilson to model his game after than future Hall of Famer Tom Brady.

Days before facing the Eagles, the eighth start of his young career, the Jets' rookie explained that he watched how certain top quarterbacks performed against Philadelphia's defense earlier in the season.

The biggest name on that list, of course, was Tampa Bay's signal-caller.

"Tom Brady was one I watched that had played against them and I thought it was really cool to see kind of how he went through his whole process, how he navigated the pocket, different things like that," Wilson told reporters. "Aaron [Rodgers] is another one that we watch a lot of the time too. In season, I always try and do that. Just to be like, 'okay, here’s what I’m doing. Here’s what these guys are doing in the similar type of offense and what things stand out to me, what things that they consistently do each and every play to just be a quarterback.'"

Brady threw for 297 yards in a 28-22 win over the Eagles in that game (back in Week 6). He completed 34 of his 42 pass attempts, flinging two touchdowns and one interception.

Those numbers seem pedestrian for a player of Brady's caliber, but for Wilson, that would be the best single-game production of his career. He's yet to eclipse 300 yards in a game this year as well.

Wilson's journey this season has featured plenty of valleys. He missed a handful of games with a knee injury and has struggled to put together complete performances under center, often struggling in the first half and making mistakes throughout, trying to do too much.

The 22-year-old recognized this week that he needs to improve on flushing previous ill-advised decisions, making sure that he doesn't carry baggage from a previous play when the football is snapped.


"Even if things aren’t going my way, I just have to hit that reset button every play and you walk back up to the line, you got to treat it like it’s the first play of the game," he said. "Everything else that’s up to that point doesn’t matter and immediately kind of ask yourself, ‘What’s my read? What am I looking for? How can I make the best decision for my team on this play specifically?’ And the rest will all take care of itself."

After all, that's something the best quarterbacks in the NFL are able to accomplish with ease each week. Even if Brady, Rodgers or another superstar throws a few interceptions or misses an open man—which happens to the best quarterbacks—the next time they drop back with the football, they're locked in and ready to do some damage.

The Eagles' defense is susceptible to big days from opposing quarterbacks. Patrick Mahomes threw for five touchdowns against Philly earlier in the year (putting up 42 points) and Justin Herbert was practically perfect against the Eagles in Week 9 (throwing 356 yards with just six incompletions).

It's far too early to put Wilson in the same category as all those aforementioned quarterbacks, but it sounds like New York's rookie is doing his homework before taking the field on Sunday, learning from the best of the best. 

If he can bring a few tricks with him to MetLife Stadium as to how those stars dismantled Philadelphia's defense—mixing in his own flare and playmaking ability—the Jets could be in a position to win their fourth game of the season on Sunday.


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