What started out as a team with Mark Sanchez, Geno Smith, Tim Tebow, Greg McElroy, Matt Simms, and David Garrard has now dwindled down to 4 “quarterbacks”. The first departure of this crew was Tim Tebow, who was a much hyped addition and turned into a much hyped bench warmer. The timing of the release was a little suspect considering all of the “improvements” the Tebow had made, but nonetheless was handled his pink slip.
The latest departure was actually earlier today, as David Garrard has decided to end his career. Via text, he wrote, “Having to call it quits. My knee is not holding up. Continuing to swell after practices. Limiting what I can do.” This does not really come as too much as a surprise as the oft injured Garrard did not impress scouts when the Jets originally worked him out. There was some optimism as to the possibility of him improving, but this was not the case.
While no one expected Garrard to win the job, it did give the Jets a veteran QB who has had success, in the advent that the other QBs stunk it up, which is still highly probable. The Jets are now left with Phil Simms’ son, whose only accomplishment is being Phil Simms’ son, and Greg Mcelroy, who started two games last season and proved to be a poor man’s Chad Pennington, yes you just read that.
The real competition boils down the Geno Smith and Mark Sanchez. In the case of Sanchez, there is no better saying then “when it rains, it pours”. While taking the team to two straight AFC championship games, having thrown 32 TD vs 49 TOs (13 Fumbles and 36 INTs), the Jets were forced to draft a QB. Geno Smith appears to have the physical attributes, but lacks the in game experience.
While the plan appeared to be that if Sanchez did not win the QB competition, he would most likely be cut, now I do not see that happening. Unless you want to take a flyer on a free agent QB like Trent Edwards or Vince Young, who is probably the most likely, Mark Sanchez is safe. It is well known that the internal favorite of the organization is Smith, but this is said to be an open competition, which is a staple of the Seahawks organization of which Idzik, the Jets GM, derives from.
In my opinion the ideal situation revolves around Sanchez or another veteran starting over Smith. Without any star receivers and three new starters on the o-line, as well as more time for development, Smith should sit for around a quarter of the season at least. All to often have young QBs been destroyed by getting hit too much and low confidence. It is important to develop his ability in reading defenses and footwork, while protecting him from premature scrutiny and bodily harm.