BYU Cougars quarterback Zach Wilson will attend the first night of the 2021 NFL Draft held in downtown Cleveland, Ohio, next Thursday and likely won't have to wait too long to hear his name called after the Jacksonville Jaguars happily select Clemson Tigers superstar quarterback Trevor Lawrence with the first pick. As of Friday afternoon, BetOnline.ag listed Wilson as the overwhelming favorite at -2000 to be drafted second overall by the New York Jets to replace former first-round pick Sam Darnold, who was traded to the Carolina Panthers on April 5.
Wilson is already doing his homework to prepare for life in the big city.
NFL Network's Aditi Kinkhabwala reports that the to-be rookie signal-caller has spoken with former Jets quarterbacks Chad Pennington, Mark Sanchez and Josh McCown about what it means to be QB1 for the organization.
All three had vastly different experiences with Gang Green. Pennington is widely viewed as one of the greatest QBs in franchise history, and Sanchez enjoyed playoff successes but also failed to cement himself as the club's needed long-term answer at the position. As ESPN's Rich Cimini wrote, McCown served as a locker-room father figure and mentor, and also an active player, when Darnold was a rookie back in 2018.
Talking the talk isn't the same as walking the walk, of course, but Wilson is doing well to learn about the highest of highs and lowest of lows that can come with being a Jets quarterback even for a short period of time.