McCown looking better than Petty and Hackenberg at Jets’ OTAs


The Jets are giving all three of the quarterbacks on their roster a chance to win the starting job, but Josh McCown appears to be a step ahead of Bryce Petty and Christian Hackenberg.

McCown took the first snaps in the Organized Team Activities that were open to the media, and according to Connor Hughes of, McCown is looking like far and away the best quarterback on the practice field.

The Jets signed McCown this year with the idea that he could start if needed and could also help mentor Petty, a 2015 fourth-round pick, and Hackenberg, a 2016 second-round pick. All three of them are likely to make the 53-man roster, but it remains to be seen what order they’ll be in on the Week One depth chart.

McCown, who turns 38 on July 4, appears to have the edge over both of the youngsters. If Petty or Hackenberg can make it a close call, they might get the nod because the Jets would rather groom a young quarterback. At the moment, however, it doesn’t sound like the competition is particularly close.

37 responses to “McCown looking better than Petty and Hackenberg at Jets’ OTAs

  1. Not great news – but expected. My best guess is McCown starts the first 6 games, Petty starts the next 6 games, and Hack finishes the last 4.

    Ideally Hack shows enough promise that the Jets go into 2018 with Hack as starter – while drafting another QB if Hack flops.

  2. McCown should be just good enough to ensure the Jets can’t land one of the top 2018 QBs in the draft.

  3. McCown played better than Cutler when he was in Chicago a few years ago. It’s too bad he isn’t playing in the same offense for the Jets.

  4. This should surprise exactly no one. McCown has been in the league a million years for a reason – the dude can play. He’s been on awful teams his entire career. If he were the Patriots’ backup and Brady went down, he’d probably lead them to the Super Bowl. Playing for teams like the Browns, or the 2004 Cardinals where he was originally drafted, well, the results are predictable.

    McCown trivia – Larry Fitzgerald’s first NFL catch was thrown by McCown.

  5. If the Jets blow their chance at the #1 pick in 2018 by starting McCown over Petty/Hackenberg, and lose out on the best QB prospect, then they are poorly managed.
    That has to come from the owner.

    To go 5-11 with McCown instead of 2-14 with Petty/Hackenberg loses out on a franchise QB (unless the Jets pay up to trade up) and still leaves them with a terrible record.

    It’s far better to really stink for 1 year, and finally draft a top QB prospect (no guarantees), than to keep missing out on top QBs.

  6. Hes a 10+ year vet and they are two kids with big arms who couldnt beat out Geno Smith for the #2 job last year. Obviously McCown is without a doubt miles better than Hack and Petty.

  7. The Jets should let Petty and Hackenberg battle it out and then go with one or the other. They need the practice reps and they are being wasted on McCown because he will get hurt.

  8. Are people seriously questioning the front office because McCown, a veteran, can pick up a new offense and perform better…in voluntary OTAs?

  9. Bad news for the Jets if he’s your starter. He was absolutely dreadful for the Bucs a few yrs ago. That’s how they got J. Winston. I didn’t like Hackenberg is college, so it’s no surprise to me that he’s not ahead.

  10. the jests are a good example of why drafting the best player available doesn’t work…they’re crowded at dline and safety because those were the best players available and the margin was just too great to actually pick a need….ya know know someone who will not have to split time and can actually be on the field to help the team will …

  11. Mc Head Shot always looks great for the Browns in the first half of games. second half he was always good at the PC saying its my fault. I.E. last years Jets game.

  12. “according to Connor Hughes of, McCown is looking like far and away the best quarterback on the practice field”.

    Hey Owners. listen up. If you don’t like the results of recent drafts and feel the need to revamp your personnel department – here is your guy.

  13. So a middle of the road back-up just starting-out with the play-book is already ahead of both young “talented” guys who’ve had a year with the offence/team. Ok. The future looks bright. And by future I mean a high pick in the draft.

  14. I want to drop a truth bomb about quarterbacking and McCown in particular.

    When former QB Jeff Garcia played for the 49’rs, he was on a good team and had a very good WR in Terrel Owens.

    He then went to a bad Browns team in 2004 and didn’t look good at all.

    In 2005 he played for the Matt Millen era team and he looked so bad that people thought he was finished, done, kaput.

    In 2006 he went to Philly as a backup and got to play extensively when highly regarded starter McNabb got injured. He played so well, he created a QB controversy. He was so efficient, many claimed he had a better grasp of running the offense than McNabb.

    In 2007 he went to Tampa Bay and had a good season. In 2008 he was hurt and eventually they parted ways.

    He petered out his final 3 seasons as a backup for 3 different teams.

    The point is, put a decent QB on a good team and he’ll look good and get most of the credit. Put him on a bad team and he won’t and will get most of the blame.

    If the Jets are good, McCown will look good.

    Af for the two young QB’s, they’ve got plenty of time to improve, and I wouldn’t be worried at this point in time that they aren’t as good as the vet.

  15. Shocker. McCown is actually a pretty decent QB but is up there in age and injury prone. Also – who is he throwing the ball to?

  16. Since 1999, the Jets have drafted more QBs (eleven) than any other team – next is Pats on 10 (plus undrafted Hoyer), then Browns on 9.

    But is it just bad drafting? How many of those 11 guys have been coached up to competency either for the Jets or elsewhere? Sanchez and Pennington were ok for a while, but they were both clear 1st round draft talents anyway – who, like 2nd-round Geno, you could argue went backwards or failed to progress with the Jets.

    By comparison, 7 of the 11 Pats pickups (all 3rd-7th round or undrafted, except 2nd-round JimmyG) were trained up to some level of competency: five – Brady, Cassel, Mallet, Hoyer, and JimmyG – plus two more by adding O’Connell (hardly played, injured early, but some success as he’s the Skins’ QB coach), and Brissett on 1-1 as a starting rookie despite playing injured.

  17. Mcown can get you that #1 pick. Ask Tampa. He almost did it for Cleveland, but the Titans were worse. Sam Darnold awaits you if you can keep him upright. Well, it doesn’t matter. Petty and Hackenburg are that bad too.

  18. What’s more hilarious is all of the clueless people saying Mcown is a good QB. No, people. No, he’s not. He’s proven it since Arizona that he’s actually terrible. Coaches love him because he’s one of those “try hard” guys who knows the playbook in and out, akin to the fat girl that tries harder than the hot chick. But as far as actually playing, he’s played well exactly once in his career, back in 2013 when he came in for Cutler when he got hurt. The rest of the time he has been garbage with a capital G.

  19. If Joe Namath showed up after a night on the town he would look better at this point of the year. It’s OTA’s …..

  20. My prediction that Hackenberg will never play a down of football for the Jets is still alive.

  21. McCown should be just good enough to ensure the Jets can’t land one of the top 2018 QBs in the draft.

    He landed us the #1 overall pick in Winston so don’t be too sure that he will be “good enough”. He was horrible here.

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