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Jets QB Aaron Rodgers suffered torn Achilles vs. Bills, will miss remainder of 2023 NFL season

Aaron Rodgers' aspirations for resurrecting the New York Jets lasted just four snaps.

Rodgers' and the Jets' cruelest fears were realized on Tuesday as an MRI revealed he suffered a torn left Achilles in Monday night's game against the Buffalo Bills and will miss the remainder of the 2023 season, NFL Network Insiders Ian Rapoport and Tom Pelissero reported.

Jets head coach Robert Saleh confirmed Rodgers' injury when he met with the New York media on Tuesday afternoon. Rodgers was officially placed on injured reserve later in the day, the team announced.

"I feel more for Aaron than anyone," Saleh said. "He has invested so much into this organization. So much into this journey that he's embarked on and wanting to be part of what we've got going here, and how much he's invested into not only this organization but his teammates, himself, this fanbase, this city. I have a lot of emotions for him. … It's really all about him. It is. I don't look at it like woe is me here for (the) New York organization. I think guys are excited about being able to step in and continue the things we've been building. But a lot of hurt for Aaron."

Saleh confirmed that Rodgers would require season-ending surgery, but he did not not have any details on the timeline for a procedure.

It's a crushing blow at the onset of what was hoped to be a renaissance season for the Jets and, furthermore, bears questioning what's next for Rodgers, who turns 40 on Dec. 2.

Going forward, 2021 NFL Draft No. 2 overall pick Zach Wilson will be the Jets' starting quarterback, which Saleh announced Monday night after he said the team feared Rodgers had ruptured his Achilles.

Saleh reaffirmed Wilson's new status as QB1 on Tuesday.

"I do want to make it very clear: Zach's our quarterback," Saleh said. "We've got a lot of faith in Zach, we're really excited about his opportunity."

The loss of Rodgers hung over the Jets' dramatic overtime win on Monday, as the long-beleaguered franchise was riding an offseason of optimism into a 2023 campaign that crashed before it got out of park.

Rodgers, who hasn't missed a game due to injury since 2017, was part of only four plays (one that resulted in a penalty), with his abbreviated stat line in his Jets debut reading: 0 of 1 with a 39.6 QB rating. His third dropback saw him pressured just as his first two did. This time, Bills pass rusher Leonard Floyd got a hold of him and wrestled him down with Rodgers' left foot catching on the turf and his Achilles tearing in the process.

The four-time Most Valuable Player initially got up to his feet and then sat back down.

Rodgers was carted to the locker room after a trip inside the blue medical tent. He was shown in a walking boot on his way to X-rays on the broadcast.

Initially deemed an ankle injury that came up negative after the X-rays, Rodgers' Achilles was the real culprit.

The Jets haven't put together a winning season since 2015 or clinched a playoff berth since 2010. Looking to change all that, Rodgers was acquired in a massive offseason trade with the Green Bay Packers, who will now receive a second-round pick next year following Rodgers' season-ending injury (Green Bay was set to receive a first-rounder if Rodgers played in at least 65 percent of snaps this year).

That trade was envisioned to end New York's playoff drought, but now, once more, Wilson will be looked on to be the savior.

The BYU product is 8-14 as a starter over his previous two seasons. The common theme in 2022 was that Wilson's poor play held back a New York squad bolstered by a tenacious defense.

New York's defense is still outstanding, as evidenced by Monday's performance. Running back Breece Hall looked amazing in his return from a torn ACL, and there are winning pieces all around Wilson.

The Jets are technically 1-0 with Rodgers as a starter. Will their grand expectations crumble in his absence, or will they be able to rally without him as they did Monday?

A high-profile matchup with the Dallas Cowboys in Week 2 will be the first confirmation of what lies ahead for Gang Green.

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