Should Vikings consider trading for Jets’ Zach Wilson in backup role?

Should the Vikings consider trading for former No. 2 overall pick Zach Wilson to compete for their backup quarterback job this year? The Jets seem ready to move on from Wilson after three disappointing seasons, even though they may only get a conditional late-round pick in return, and there’s been some speculation that Minnesota could be a good fit.

Should Vikings consider trading for Jets' Zach Wilson in backup role?

Zack Rosenblatt, The Athletic‘s Jets writer, called the Vikings “the most intriguing potential destination” for Wilson in a trade.

Kirk Cousins is a free agent, and Minnesota doesn’t have any young quarterbacks on the roster worth developing. In addition, quarterback-friendly coach (Kevin O’Connell) has a proven history of putting his QBs in position to succeed. This is the most intriguing potential destination.

One could argue that 2023 fifth-round pick Jaren Hall — who succeeded Wilson at BYU — shouldn’t be completely cast aside as unworthy of development after 20 regular season pass attempts, but the point about O’Connell being a quarterback-friendly coach is a valid one.

Bleacher Report’s Adam Wells also listed the Vikings (along with the Colts and Titans) as a top landing spot for Wilson, citing Minnesota’s elite offensive infrastructure and Wilson having a lower career interception rate than Nick Mullens. While that latter part is true, Wilson’s career passer rating (73.2) is also much lower than Mullens’ (88.1). He falls short in basically every other statistical category, too.

Very little has gone right for Wilson over the first three years of his NFL career. He’s 12-21 as a starter, recording a passer rating above 90 just five times in those 33 starts. He had already fully earned the bust label through two seasons, then was unable to keep a loaded Jets roster afloat last year after Aaron Rodgers went down early in the opener.

Maybe there’s no hope for Wilson at the NFL level, even as a backup. But as a former No. 2 overall pick, he’s going to get another chance somewhere, and maybe this inevitable change of scenery will help him resurrect his career a bit and stick around as a backup for a while.

The argument for taking a flier on Wilson is that the raw arm talent that helped him thrive at BYU and get drafted so high still exists. He’s got a lot of work to do in terms of reading the game, making good decisions, and delivering accurate passes, but perhaps it’s a reclamation project worth taking on at very little cost. It does feel like the sort of move this Vikings regime — which has previously added disappointing former early-round picks like Jalen Reagor, N’Keal Harry, Ross Blacklock, Joejuan Williams, and Cam Akers — might at least consider.

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