Zach Wilson’s first game against Bill Belichick’s defense went miserably for the rookie quarterback.
Wilson threw four interceptions — in his first 10 pass attempts — and heard boos in the second half after overthrowing a wide-open receiver in the Jets’ 25-6 loss to the Patriots at MetLife Stadium.
Robert Saleh’s Jets are 0-2. It was the Jets’ 11th straight loss to New England.
This was the Jets’ first game at MetLife Stadium with fans since 2019, and they left unhappy after Wilson’s abysmal performance. Many of them left very early. The No. 2 pick from BYU just missed matching the Jets’ record for interceptions thrown by a rookie. Mark Sanchez threw five in 2009.
It wasn’t as if Belichick was throwing a variety of blitzes or looks at Wilson. The young quarterback just made poor decisions and wasn’t sharp from the very beginning. His first two pass attempts, both intended for Corey Davis, were intercepted.
Wilson finished 19-for-33 for 210 yards. Davis, who had two touchdown grabs last week against Carolina, caught two passes for 8 yards. Matt Ammendola’s two field goals from 21 and 35 yards accounted for the Jets’ only points.
Patriots rookie quarterback Mac Jones fared far better than Wilson. Jones was 22-for-30 for 186 yards and no turnovers. Damien Harris and James White scored rushing touchdowns for New England.
The Jets’ offensive line and run game were much better than in Week 1. Wilson was sacked four times — two in the last two minutes — and the Jets totaled 152 yards on the ground. But Wilson’s mistakes were impossible for the Jets to overcome.
On his first pick, Wilson threw into traffic. It was tipped and eventually grabbed by Patriots cornerback J.C. Jackson. On the second, Wilson had a wide-open Elijah Moore right in front of him. But he forced a longer attempt to Davis and overthrew him. Adrian Phillips picked it off.
The two interceptions led to a Nick Folk 46-yard field goal and a 7-yard touchdown run by White, putting the Jets in a 10-0 hole.
The Jets put together a good drive after that, with Wilson completing back-to-back passes for 27 and 7 yards. They had first-and-goal from the 8. But the drive stalled when Ty Johnson was hit for a 1-yard loss on third-and-goal from the 2. They settled for an Ammendola 21-yard field goal, the first of his NFL career.
After a strong defensive series by the Jets that included sacks by John Franklin-Myers and Sheldon Rankins, Wilson was intercepted for the third time in the half. The Jets were in New England territory when Wilson underthrew Moore and was picked by Jackson again at the Patriots’ 13.
Wilson was 3-for-7 for 45 yards with three interceptions in the first half.
Things continued to go badly for Wilson in the second half. On his second pass attempt, he was intercepted on another poorly thrown ball. Devin McCourty joined the pick party and returned it to the Jets’ 35. Two plays later, Damien Harris scored on a 26-yard run.
Harris broke five tackles and carried a few Jets into the end zone with him on the score that made it 19-3.