Gregg Rosenthal of NFL.com appropriately called making fun of the New York Jets our “fifth national sport” this morning on Twitter. At this point, it doesn’t matter what rumor the team is associated with or how flimsy that information is, the only object of every beat writer and major NFL writer is to sprint to the keyboard and fire off a snarky Tweet preceded by “LOLZJETS…AMIRITE?” Context isn’t important, looking at the broader picture isn’t important and certainly common sense isn’t important.
It is always entertaining to hear fans of certain other NFL teams say “GOD, AT LEAST WE ARE NOT JETS FANS” – Do you know how many playoff wins Buffalo and Miami have combined for in the past ten years? ZERO. The Jets have six. When is the last time Cleveland Browns fans have celebrated a meaningful victory? MetLife Stadium may be a factory of drunken unhappiness on Jets Sundays but we aren’t at Factory Of Sadness Levels…yet.
Jacksonville fans? Oh…I forgot tarps can’t talk. All the Maganelli Dallas Cowboys fans in the area have seen one playoff win in the past 15 years. The Kansas City Chiefs haven’t won a playoff game since 1993! The Cincinnati Bengals since 1990! The list goes on but you get the point.
When a rumor surfaces that the New York Jets might have interest in signing Brady Quinn. It does not mean the Jets are 100% signing Quinn to a 7 year, 75 million fully guaranteed contract. It means they are considering bringing Quinn into training camp. Why? They need veterans to compete with Mark Sanchez…cheap veterans because they no have money to spend at quarterback. The stable of 2013 quarterbacks which is likely to be – Mark Sanchez, Retread Free Agent X, Mid-Round Draft Pick and Greg McElroy is a hold the fort situation until cap space frees up and the 2014 Draft rolls around. If the Jets bring in Brady Quinn or David Garrard it isn’t to be the long term quarterback it is to help hold the fort until 2014. The Jets want cheap and no long term commitment. Quinn? DING. DING. DING.
Your reality is that Mark Sanchez is probably going to be the starting quarterback next year and Jets fans should want him to be. I can promise you his resume is more impressive than whatever retread the Jets sign on the cheap. Hopefully he plays himself into having some type of trade value heading into the 2014 season because the rest of the teams in the NFL aren’t run by individuals who despise every movement Sanchez makes. “He rubbed his hair on the sideline…SO CODDLED AND MENTALLY WEAK!” – Chances are somebody says, “Hey this guy was a capable starter in 2010 and for parts of 2011, has won four playoff games, including one in New England, melted down in an awful situation but has first round talent. Let’s float a 5th round pick for him and let him compete.” This scenario becomes more likely if Sanchez can put up even a thoroughly unimpressive 17 touchdown, 16 interception, 3,000 yard season with a 55 completion percentage in 2013.
The point is you can laugh at these names but what do you expect the Jets to do? They are doing their due diligence on cheap options because they have limited financial flexibility in 2013 and want as much financial freedom as possible for 2014 and beyond. There isn’t going to be splashy signings or trades. There is going to be sitting out the first wave of overpaid free agents and hopefully finding a few solid low-cost contributors. There is going to be plenty of draft picks and plenty of 1st and 2nd year guys playing major reps this season. It will be painful at times but in the long run it will be for the betterment of the franchise.