After Jets Robert Saleh said second-year QB Zach Wilson had returned to Florham Park looking more beefy, Wilson reminded reporters Tuesday that his head coach was quite the muscular one himself.
"That dude's beefy," Wilson said. "You've seen him?"
Wilson, sporting a bit of a mullet in the back of his head, changed his diet in his first professional offseason.
"Of course, every year, you do your typical strength training and lifting and running, but typically you just try to eat healthy," he said. "I try to actually have a written plan of how much to eat, when to eat, tracking everything down to the macro(s). I have somebody help me with all that stuff, that's probably been the biggest difference as far as being able to put good weight on."
Wilson, who ended his rookie season at 208 pounds, "put on a quite a bit of weight" and is tipping the scales at 221 pounds early in OTAs.
"My goal is to kind of try to push over 220 and then once we hit the summer, try and cut back and probably play around 218," he said on Tuesday. "But that was a big goal. I feel like every year in season, you're going to lose weight so everybody tries to get as big as they can and you're going to lose a little bit of weight once training camp and the season hits."
See the Jets on the field during the second OTA practice of 2022.
Wilson believes increased weight won't mean diminished athleticism.
"I feel better for sure, the energy, the ability to have that stamina throughout the whole practice I think is better," he said. "I think that in the long run, once we get into a game where we're actually getting hit and tackled, having some more size on me would help."
Wilson, the No. 2 overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, went 3-10 as a starter in Year 1 while completing 55.6% of his passes with 9 TDs and 11 INTs. He also ran for 4 TDs and finished his rookie campaign protecting the ball, playing his final five games without an interception.
"It's a blast to get back out there with the guys," Wilson said of his return to the grass with his teammates. "The additions we have, the little wrinkles that we added within the offense and just the challenge of seeing what we did last year, trying to apply that and get better as a unit is a lot of fun."
The Jets have added significant talent around Wilson since January, starting with the free agency signings of Pro Bowl LG Laken Tomlinson, TEs C.J. Uzomah and Tyler Conklin and that was followed by the drafting of WR Garrett Wilson, RB Breece Hall and TE Jeremy Ruckert. A more-seasoned Wilson is looking forward to his second step.
"The more experience you have at that level, you're going to feel more confident and that's the entire unit together," he said. "We just feel more confident together and we're really trying to take that offensive step to the next level and I think everybody in general feels more comfortable. The coaches feel more comfortable putting a little bit more on us as well, so it is more exciting to come into a year two of offense rather than year one."
While the Jets have accumulated some sweet pieces around Wilson, he won't be partaking in too much sugar off the field with the new diet.
"I do have a sweet tooth pretty bad, so that's been the challenge — the cookies, the cakes and those kind of things," he said.