There are a lot of things on Garrett Wilson's mind these days, and a few things that aren't in the forefront of his thinking. It will be interesting how the mental and physical come together for the Jets' lead wideout against Miami on Friday.
One thing that he wants to concentrate on: Not putting the ball on the ground. He's lost two fumbles the past three games.
'"I've got to be better with ball security. I've been lax with it in my career so far. Fortunately, I can fix it," he said with a hard look in the mirror. "I feel like the book is out on me. They're not worried about tackling me as much as tackling the ball.
"With the things happening these last few weeks, it makes me take a hard look in the mirror and at my habits in practice. I've got to pay attention to that because it's leaking into Sunday. The best thing to do about that is to go about it during the week, know the guys who are going to target the ball and who's just going to play the man."
So Wilson's got a game plan for that. But as far as his strange season to date, he's not concerned (much) about no touchdowns since Game 2 at Dallas or his two catches for 9 yards against the Bills, one of the lowest outputs in his 27 NFL games.
"I'm motivated to win a game, score a touchdown, whatever it takes," he said, adding about the scoring drought, "It's been a while. It's a spot where you don't want to talk about it, but that's just the reality. There's a lot of things I'm looking forward to prove to my teammates and to myself."
One element Wilson doesn't feel he has to overthink is how things will roll now that he's on to his third starting QB this season, Tim Boyle, who follows Aaron Rodgers (all offseason but four plays in the regular season) and Zach Wilson. G.Wilson's scouting report on T.Boyle:
"He's really precise, really on his details," Wilson said. "He's doing it the same way every week, then all of a sudden he's starting this week. He doesn't have to change anything. He's going about it the right way."
Yet if that means Boyle and the Jets need a spark and it's not No. 17 at that moment, he's OK with that.
"Anything can spark anything," he said of the Jets' offense, which, if anyone's counting, has produced two touchdowns (and eight field goals) in the last 16 quarters plus one quick overtime. "Whatever we've been doing, we didn't feel like we were getting where we wanted to be at. How do we find it? It could be someone to come in for me, whatever, wherever. We're searching. We've got to make it happen this week. Anything can spark and then it's what are you going to do with it."
With his team-leading receiving numbers — 103 targets, 57 catches, 651 yards, two TDs — it's hard to see Wilson coming out of any game for any reason, other than injury. And that's one more thing he'd prefer not to think of, his aching elbow that he incurred at Las Vegas and has had him limited in practice these past two weeks.
"I hurt it for sure. It's there. I know what I'm getting into," he said, adding about the possibility of needing an offseason procedure, "I'm not in a spot where I need surgery, I haven't been told that. As long as I stay healthy, time will heal it. But right now, there's no time. I've got to get to it."
And in getting to it on the day after Thanksgiving, one more thought quickly intrudes before Wilson politely seals it off from the things that matter the most in the coming days.
"It's really cool to be a part of the first one," he said of the Jets-Dolphins being the NFL's inaugural Black Friday game, "but I'm trying not to think about it. We're not in position to be thinking about stuff like that, sadly. We've got to go out a win a game."