Jets quarterback competition dubbed “farcical” and a “charade”

AP

On Tuesday morning, Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News tweeted that Geno Smith will start at quarterback for the Jets in the team’s third preseason game, if he suffers no setbacks with his ankle injury.  Later in the day, Mehta took aim at the entire quarterback competition in New York with far more than 140 characters or less.

Calling it “farcical” and a “charade,” Mehta writes that Smith never actually was competing with Mark Sanchez.  Instead, the organization wants Smith to start, and the organization created a rigged competition aimed at allowing Smith to win the job.

While Mehta’s assessment may be on the money, we’ve got no problem with it.  Young quarterbacks who are preordained to start routinely must “win” the job.  It helps the young quarterback avoid (or at least minimize) the perception inside and outside the locker room that the job has been handed to him.  Also, it helps the young quarterback build a little confidence before he’s thrown to the wolves in Week One.

Last year, for example, the Dolphins installed rookie Ryan Tannehill at No. 3 on the depth chart.  We knew that the Dolphins wouldn’t leave the eighth overall pick on the bench when the real games began, and they didn’t.

This year, the Jets have 11 million reasons to keep Sanchez on the sidelines.  If he plays well enough in 2013 to create a groundswell in the media and among the fans for Sanchez to return next season, he’ll have a $2 million roster bonus and a $9 million base salary.  While in theory those dollars could be reconfigured or reduced, why would Sanchez yield any leverage?  If the Jets become backed into a corner to keep Sanchez, he needs to simply take the position that his contract should be honored — or he should be released.

The Jets haven’t previously released Sanchez for 8.25 million reasons.  He gets his full salary this year whether he’s on the team or not, and if the Jets cut him they have to pay him in full within 30 days.  If the Jets had let Sanchez go and if Smith had popped an Achilles tendon on the first day of training camp, the Jets would have already paid Sanchez to not be available to play in place of Smith.

It’s obvious that new G.M. John Idzik, who has said he’ll have a “pretty big role” in picking the starter, wants to see what the player taken with a high second-round draft pick can do.  With the Jets possibly in line for a high first-round pick in 2014, they need to know whether they need to use that pick on a quarterback.

The coaching staff may feel differently.  Sanchez could give Rex Ryan a better chance to win enough games to keep his job.  If Sanchez stumbles, Smith could then get the job in garbage time of the season, with Ryan trying to develop enough hope and promise with Smith to earn the right to keep coaching him in 2014.

Regardless, Mehta believes that two quarters of turnover-free football will deliver the Week One starting job for Smith.  Actually, Smith may be able to get away with a pick or two, especially if Sanchez can’t protect the ball when facing backups in the second half of the game.

47 responses to “Jets quarterback competition dubbed “farcical” and a “charade”

  1. The Giants dumped Kurt Warner and inserted Eli Manning 8 games into his rookie season. There was no competition. In the off season they unloaded Warner who is still bitter about it. Two Superbowl MVP awards later the decision seems very wise.

  2. ZZZZZZZZZZ

    Could not matter less who starts for the J..E..T..S Jets, Jets, Jets

    This team will compete with Miami for cellar dweller honors

  3. Sanchez a better chance to win football games? You mean like he has over the last two years?

    Oh wait, its because he “took” the Jets to two AFC Championship Games. No player, team or coach tries to point that out more than the Jets. And like people remember who finishes in fourth place right?

  4. If he plays well enough in 2013 to create a groundswell in the media and among the fans for Sanchez to return next season,
    _______________________________

    Have you ever looked at the Jets message board on gangreen.com? There’s something like a 1700 page thread called “Sanchez SUCKS SUCKS SUCKS”

    Even if they won the Super Bowl I doubt the fans would want him back. They loathe Sanchez. And if they did 11 mil a year is pretty average these days for a starter if Sanchez could turn things around that much.

  5. Even if the competition was rigged, Sanchez has made it easier for all by being the same inconsistent QB that sank the team last year. And, as always, Mehta believes his opinion is actual news. He should investigate a thing called “journalism”. It’s kind of interesting.

  6. Manish Mehta is a cancer. Having him cover your team is worse than signing Albert Haynesworth to a $100 million deal and then injecting him with blood from Aaron Hernandez, Rae Carruth, and Stanley Wilson.

  7. More proof that Sexy Rexy and Sanchez are dead men walking. Rexy’s wife needs to get her ink redone in a hurry. About time this marriage walked down the aisle, and out of New Jersey.

  8. Idzik created a competition to get rid of Ryan. He knew Smith wasn’t the answer either, and this way he can get his own coach, and that coach can get his own QB. If Smith does well enough, Ryan proves himself and gets to stay. It’s win/win for Idzik.

  9. Manish Mehta: The ultimate Mark Sanchez dee rider.

    Who cares if its rigged for Geno smith to start the NY Jets and there fans have seen enough of that bust.

  10. I sure don’t know which QB is going to be the starter, but let’s see if Mehta prints a “mea culpa” if Sanchez is picked as the starter.

  11. “Instead, the organization wants Smith to start, and the organization created a rigged competition aimed at allowing Smith to win the job.”

    They rigged the competition by letting Sanchez play. He took care of the rest.

  12. Mehta your article is comical at best, your idea that IF Sanchez played well there would be a ground swell of support for him may be the most absurd thing I’ve ever read he could win the super bowl and still have NO fan support.

  13. countmahdrof says:
    Aug 21, 2013 9:28 AM
    Last year, for example, Ryan Tannehill was clearly the best QB on the Dolphin’s roster. Can the same be said of Geno Smith?
    __________________________________

    Tannehill was not “clearly” better than Matt Moore by week 1 of last season.

  14. With the Jets being devoid of weapons and an offensive line it becomes a question of which QB is better suited to run for their lives. Obviously Geno is the man for the job.

  15. Has anyone noticed that Smith’s eyes are not proportional to his face?

    It seems that he has small eye sockets! Could lead into problems

  16. ampats says:
    Aug 21, 2013 9:28 AM
    Manish Mehta describes the entire Jets organization best in two words: “farcical & a charade”
    ————————————————-
    Unlike the entire Patriot organization’s best two word description of “Murder Inc.”, though I prefer “Have Gun Will Travel”

  17. It’s not farcical to have a “rigged” competition when your objective is to get the best guy playing, while keeping everyone as motivated as possible to play well, taking account of different player personalities, and being able to adjust when the unexpected (injuries, suspensions, etc.) occurs and you then need the next guy to be as productive as possible and not sulking. Being a good HC means understanding how to get the most out of what you have.

    What IS farcical is leaving such a process in the hands of one (or more) who clearly has/have no aptitude for it.

  18. Rex and the Jets are lucky they play in the same division as Buffalo to deflect some of the well-deserved negative attention they’ll be receiving this season based on merit.

  19. It’s obvious that new G.M. John Idzik, who has said he’ll have a “pretty big role” in picking the starter.

    Ryan can’t wait to become a D.C. for another team.

  20. Last years fins qb to start at least the first few games was going to be garrard until he got hurt.

  21. Yea, because trotting the Sanchize out there again to turn the ball over another 25+ times this season is the way to go. Somebody is upset because one of his “buddies” on the team is losing his job.

  22. Lets see if my pea brain can figure this out. Sanchez totally stunk up the place last year in farcical fashion.
    The Jets draft a top prospect who can pass and run and gee, were supposed to think for some reason that the guy they drafted was for a backup role and a development role? I don’t think so.

    The only person who believes that line is Sanchez.

  23. Its beyond time Geno boy put up or shuts up. My take is he ain’t that sharp. I see visions of Travaris Jackson; can run, can pass but cannot understand a lick of complicated NFL defenses.
    TJ had all the physical tools except the one between his ears. If I’m wrong the Jets improve a lot, if not its going to be another agonizing season for Jets fans.
    If the fans are screaming for Sanchez at the end of the season, I may have something here.

  24. Geno does not strike me as a hard worker who will excel at the postion in the NFL. He seems lazy , and self entitled. He will not be an improvement over Sanchez. Everyone is so quick to have the next best thing, they sometimes shoot themselves in the foot doing so.
    Not sure why everyone thinks so highly of Smith. He started out as a heisman canditate with a lot of press last year, and ened in mediocrity (makes perfect sense the jets were the team to bite on him).

  25. Here’s a prediction. It’s kind of a stretch…

    Smith starts… Jets pick second or third in the next draft. Rex and Sanchez are gone. Smith holds a clipboard next year.

  26. Unless Smith is hurt there’s absolutely no upside to going with Sanchez. Smith is an unknown–he could stink but could also turn out to be good. Sanchez is a known commodity and won’t get any better than he as been in the past.

  27. mykl954 says:
    Aug 21, 2013 10:54 AM
    Rex and the Jets are lucky they play in the same division as Buffalo to deflect some of the well-deserved negative attention they’ll be receiving this season based on merit.
    —————————————————-

    And mykl954 doesn’t know football. Syracuse was nothing when Marrone showed up — young team, good coach, straightened out front office, and the Bills will make strides this year; no prediction other than turning the ship around.

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