The West Coast offense is coming to the Jets, and a guy who played college football on the West Coast has reached out to a guy who played pro football on the West Coast (at least for a while) in order to prepare for it.
Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News reports that Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez called retired quarterback Jeff Garcia in an effort to begin learning the offense Marty Mornhinweg will be bringing to the Jets.
Both players confirmed to Mehta that they hope to get together soon for classroom and on-field work.
“It’s great,” Sanchez told Mehta. “Jeff sounds like one of those guys that keeps his old playbook and is still really into it. He really speaks the language of that West Coast offense. It’s nice to hear the schematic side, but also to hear what people think about [Mornhinweg].”
Informal efforts like this become an important aspect of learning a new offense, given restrictions on both offseason workouts organized by the team and limitations on communication between players and coaches during the offseason. And while that’s one of the benefits negotiated by the players in the current labor deal, players like Sanchez, who want and need the ability to get ready for a new offense, may not feel that it’s much of a benefit.
“Mark has just come off of a tough year, a tough experience,” Garcia told Mehta. “He’s had some great things that have happened early in his career and now he’s at that point where things really didn’t go all that well. He needs to resuscitate himself. He needs to resurrect himself not just for the fans of the New York Jets, but for his own teammates. He needs to prove that he is the guy that can lead them.”
Sanchez’s willingness to put in the time on his own should be regarded by Jets fans as encouraging, given that Sanchez gets $8.25 million in 2013 whether he’s the starter or the backup or ultimately cut.