NFL Week 7 rookie QB grades: Justin Fields falls apart; Mac Jones vs. Zach Wilson 2 a one-sided affair
Information about NFL Week 7 rookie QB grades: Justin Fields falls apart; Mac Jones vs. Zach Wilson 2 a one-sided affair
Mac vs. Zach: Part 2 was a fairly one-sided affair.
Jets quarterback Zach Wilson is expected to miss some time after exiting Sunday’s blowout loss to the Patriots with a knee injury, which doesn’t sound like the worst-case scenario for New York.
That said, Gang Green left Foxborough black and blue after Mac Jones and the Patriots ran roughshod over New York, tuning them up to a 54-13 loss. The latest win for Jones comes with an excellent performance, notching his first 300-yard game of his career and getting a strong support performance from the running game to help him.
What fans witnessed on Sunday’s matchup is a tale of two QBs: Even though New England hasn’t gotten off to the start it wanted, as they enter the middle stages of the season, their QB seems comfortable and poised, which is all you can ask for from a rookie QB. Wilson and the Jets are still searching for answers on offense, and with their starter out, will have to wait a bit longer to put some questions to bed.
Here’s how the rookies fared in Week 7:
Zach Wilson: Incomplete
Stats: 6/10, 51 yards
Wilson left during the second quarter of Sunday’s rematch with the Patriots with a knee injury, but generally looked OK prior to his early exit.
The issues with the Jets offense are complicated and run deeper than just Wilson, and Sunday’s game proved that. Coming off their bye week, Jets coaches insisted that they figured out the offensive woes. Players insisted that the “energy” was different.
As it turns out, that was not the case in the 54-13 loss to the Patriots on Sunday. Even through just over a quarter, Wilson looked a bit frazzled and looked to escape the pocket prematurely.
Mac Jones: B+
Stats: 24/36, 307 yards, two touchdowns
Business as usual for Mac Jones in the slaughter of Jets on Sunday afternoon.
Jones still had trouble connecting on some deeper throws early in the game, but would hook up with Kendrick Bourne late in the game for a 46-yard pickup that would lead to another Patriots score.
Jones is just humming along and is in control of the offense at the moment: It’s nothing flashy or exciting, with the Patriots’ offense predicated to attacking the middle of the field. It was more of the same for Easy Mac on Sunday, as he made Swiss cheese out of the Jets defense in the win.
Davis Mills: D
Stats: 23/32, 135 yards, no touchdowns, one fumble
The Jekyll-and-Hyde rookie year for Davis Mills continues, with another loss in a very meh performance on Sunday.
Mills completed 23 passes but for only 135 yards vs. the Cardinals, including entering the fourth quarter under 100 yards of passing. No, really.
The good news: Mills is finding completions, even if his receivers are helping him out just a bit. The bad news: It’s not showing much by way of scoreboard, with the Texans managing just five points in the blowout loss.
With the trade rumors bubbling up around Deshaun Watson once again and Tyrod Taylor nearing a return from a hamstring injury, the Texans are going to have to make a decision on whether or not Mills will continue getting snaps over the veteran Taylor once he returns. The question to whether or not Mills can be a viable starter remains, but he’s the guy for now.
(Unfortunately, there were no Davis Mills highlights readily available for your viewing pleasure.)
Justin Fields: F
Stats: 22/32, 184 yards, no touchdowns, three interceptions, three fumbles (two lost)
Fields has looked as though he’s been stuck in neutral since being named the starter, and Sunday was far and away his worst game as a starter.
Fields threw three more interceptions on Sunday (one was tipped) and lost two fumbles in the effort. While there were some really good throws (really, just like, two), Fields’ insane physical attributes still aren’t being utilized in Matt Nagy’s offense.
Yes, Fields still isn’t getting help from his offensive line, but there are some rookie mistakes sandwiched in that he’s still accountable for. Forcing plays down the field resulted in two of his picks.
That said, not catering to your rookie QB’s skillset is, in a word, troubling, when you’re trying to help make him comfortable and up to speed in the NFL game. But, if things keep going the way they are, then Fields won’t have to worry about Nagy’s offense for too much longer.