Jets coach Rex Ryan doesn’t know who his starting quarterback will be this season, and he doesn’t even have a good guess.
Asked on ESPN Radio in New York if he has a gut feeling who the Jets’ starter will be, Ryan answered, “No, I don’t.”
What Ryan said everyone should expect in Jets camp is a competition, although he didn’t name any of the players who will be involved in that competition other than Mark Sanchez. It’s also expected that David Garrard and Greg McElroy will be in the mix, and the Jets may also add a free agent like Kevin Kolb or draft a quarterback. (Quarterbacks Tim Tebow and Matt Simms are on the roster as well, but no one expects either of them to compete for the starting job.)
“I think it’s going to be a position, obviously, where we’re bringing in competition,” Ryan said. “I don’t think there’s a clear-cut favorite in my opinion. I just think it’s going to be competition from day one. Sanchez will take the first snap, but that’s all you can say. It’s going to be an open competition.”
Ryan said the Jets have to get better at quarterback, whether that means Sanchez playing better in 2013 than he did in 2012 or someone else unseating Sanchez.
“I haven’t lost confidence in Mark, but I do know this: The play at quarterback has to get better,” Ryan said. “There’s no doubt. Whether it’s Mark or someone else we know we have to improve in that area without a doubt. I guess we can file that in the ‘no kidding’ category, but that’s it: It has to get better. I believe that Mark will get a lot better but I also believe there’s going to be stiffer competition than there was in past years.”
Ryan also said he does not view this as a rebuilding year. If they’re not better in 2013 than they were in 2012, however, 2014 will be a rebuilding year for the Jets. With a new head coach.