But the guy the Jets initially brought in to backup Sanchez said he was told he’d get a chance to start if Sanchez struggled this year.
“Had Mark struggled, they said I’d have a chance to play,” current Colts backup Drew Stanton told Newsday’s Bob Glauber. “So there was no better opportunity than that, and I was excited about it.”
Stanton’s saga was an amazing one for a few weeks this spring.
He signed a one-year deal with the Jets March 16. Four days later, Peyton Manning signed with the Broncos. The day after that, Tebow was traded to the Jets.
Stanton asked for a trade or release immediately, and two days later, he was a Colt, in exchange for a sixth-round pick. He’s inarguably much farther away from the field now behind Andrew Luck, but his strange days in New York still confound.
“It was tough, because I didn’t know what the future held,” Stanton said. “I didn’t want to be in the same [quarterback] room with Tim, because it’s difficult from the media or fan standpoint. He’s such a good guy, and the perception of him makes it so difficult.
” . . . They wanted to keep me, but I said, ‘Hey, I really don’t want to be a part of that, because that’s not what we agreed to.’ Mike [Tannenbaum] said, ‘We’re going to do right by you.’ Mike acquiesced a little bit and he said, ‘Had we known Tebow would have been available, obviously we wouldn’t have said that to you.’ “
Stanton quickly, and accurately, realized he wouldn’t win a popularity contest, and that any chance he’d have to play was gone the minute Tebow walked in the door.
“They didn’t have a press conference for me when I signed,” Stanton said, getting a shot in at the huge event Tebow’s arrival became. “But they upheld what they said, they found a good situation for me, and it’s fortunate for me.”
And even though his playing would have depended on Sanchez playing poorly, Stanton said he hopes the Jets starter turns things around — next week.
“I feel bad for Mark,” Stanton said. “Everybody’s rooting for the backup. I’d like to see him turn it around, hopefully not this week, but in the weeks to come.”
Stanton’s story should only serve to make Sanchez that much more nervous. As many times as Rex Ryan says he’s his guy, the fact they’d offer a shot to Stanton makes it clear that it’s just a matter of time before Tebow gets his.