Jets’ Mike White pumped to start his first NFL

This could be Mike White.

In 3 seasons in the NFL, he had never even started. He didn’t see a minute until Zach Wilson fell with a knee injury last week.

Next week, Joe Flacco is expected to be ready to play until Wilson is ready to return.

Within this tight pocket of time sits White, the starting quarterback for the Jets.

“I’m going to start an NFL game,” White said Thursday after training. “this is wonderul.”

The 26-year-old from Pembroke Pines, Florida — who played for two years at USF two years ago in Western Kentucky and then used a strong Senior Bowl game to launch a fifth-round pick by the Cowboys in 2018 — finally got his chance, No matter how short term.

White didn’t surprise with Dallas before he was waived in 2019, when Gates signed him for the first time. They’ve signed him 11 times since then, either to the coaching staff or the active roster, because they’ve consistently dropped him off the active roster to free up space. No suitor for the brief free agent showed up, so White will be back with the Jets coaching staff.

Mike White
Mike White
USA Today Sports

Not expecting the newly acquired Flacco to be with the Jets until Friday for personal reasons and unable to get started, she set the stage for a week of White’s dreams. It’s “cool,” he said, and his phone goes off. He said he recently spoke with Mets player Lewis Gilroom, who also grew up in South Florida and was a baseball teammate.

“I went this week and attacked this week and tried not to do it more than it is,” said White, who went 20-for-32 with touchdowns and two interceptions to rest Wilson against the Patriots. “We’re going out there on Sunday, and I’m going to try to help this football team win and do my job.”

It’s a job that Gates says they are comfortable doing, despite the Flacco trade. Senior offensive assistant Matt Kavanaugh said that throughout this season, White will stay behind on the training ground to get every rep that Wilson has earned; Wilson will serve with the first team, and after they leave, White will remain on the field and make the same throws.

As White remained prepared, there was no narrowing down of the rules of the game.

“We see in him Zack-like qualities, and he can stand there and throw it,” Kavanaugh said. “He can make quick decisions. He has precision.”

And he gets his initial job on Sunday, when the Bengals visit MetLife Stadium.

“There were a lot of ups and downs,” White said of his career. “But I think, personally, I’m proud of the way I handled it and persevered and kept working from my tail and getting better and putting myself in this situation.”


WR Corey Davis (hip) was added to the Jets injury report and listed as a limited practice participant. LB Quincy Williams (concussion) was also limited after not exercising on Wednesday.

Others are limited: S Ashtyn Davis (shoulder), TE Tyler Kroft (back), DL Shaq Lawson (wrist) and LB CJ Mosley (hamstring).

Not exercising are RB Tevin Coleman, DL Bryce Huff, TE Trevon Wesco (knee), QBs Wilson (knee) and Flacco (personal).


The Jets DL returned Ronnie Blair to the coaching squad and released DB Natrell Jamerson from the coaching squad.

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