Jets QB coach Jeremy Bates defends Christian Hackenberg’s accuracy

AP

Chritstian Hackenberg’s accuracy (or lack thereof) has been questioned repeatedly since the New York Jets selected the Penn State product in the second round of last year’s NFL Draft.

Hackenberg did not play in a regular season game last season despite injuries and struggles by the rest of the quarterbacks on the roster. An unnamed coach said Hackenberg “couldn’t hit the ocean” with his passes at the end of last season. Meanwhile this offseason, Hackenberg’s passes have occasionally ended up caroming off reporters on the sidelines or defenders instead of his intended targets.

But Jets quarterback coach Jeremy Bates doesn’t buy the assessment of Hackenberg’s accuracy. According to Daniel Popper of the New York Daily News, Bates defended the ability of Hackenberg to throw accurately.

I think he’s real accurate,” Bates said. “I think he’s throwing the ball well. He’s throwing it on time. Part of accuracy is knowing where to go with the ball, and each day, he plays faster. He gets in a rhythm. And I think everyone in the building is excited to see where he’s going. I think he’s accurate.”

Whether Hackenberg is accurate enough and capable enough to earn a starting role with the Jets remains to be seen. The fact he couldn’t get on the field last year wasn’t a good sign. Regardless of what Bates says, Hackenberg has to prove it on the field in order for the questions about his accuracy to subside.