The Jets traded for quarterback Joe Flacco last month, a strange move that looks even more strange this week, with the unvaccinated Flacco on the COVID-19 reserve list. But Jets coach Robert Saleh is standing by it.
Saleh said giving up only a late-round draft pick for a veteran quarterback is worth it.
“When someone offers a sixth-round pick for a player of Joe’s caliber, there is no risk,” Saleh said.
But of course there was a risk, namely that bringing in an unvaccinated player would cause upheaval in the quarterback room, and that’s exactly what happened. Mike White is currently out because he tested positive for COVID-19, while Flacco is out because he was a close contact with White.
And while the risk of a sixth-round pick may be low, it was also no-reward for a Jets team that is going nowhere and needs to focus primarily on developing its young players. If the Jets wanted a veteran backup on board, they should have just re-signed Flacco in March, before he left the team in free agency and signed with the Eagles. The Jets could have just as easily kept Flacco, had him around to mentor rookie Zach Wilson all along, and not given up a draft pick to get him.
So regardless of Saleh’s statement, it’s hard to see the Jets’ process with Flacco as anything other than a mistake.