From Geno To Tebow – Jets Circus Shrinks In Size

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The simultaneous roster changes that marked Geno Smith’s arrival and Tim Tebow’s exit show that John Idzik’s Jets do not value ESPN cameras, newspaper headlines and jersey sales over the notion of putting pieces in place to win. The Jets never had a plan for Tebow beyond hoping and praying that his abilities could somehow find a functional place within a sixty minute game. Smith was drafted last week by Idzik to win a job now, and with the circus dwindling in size, the big question that remains is whether Rex Ryan and Mark Sanchez, the two notable Mike Tannenbaum-era pieces can survive the purge.


Sanchez has a monster contract making him hard to move but a home stadium waiting to tar and feather him at the sight of one ill thrown ball. Sanchez may be growing a tag as someone who was part of a past the Idzik Jets want to separate themselves from. Could his release or a training camp trade involving him be the next part of the plan, should he fail to present himself as a viable starter in camp?

Ryan must try and become the next Marvin Lewis. Fast. The Bengals HC who is 79-84 overall, nonetheless survived the Carson Palmer to Andy Dalton transition by keeping his club inspired and growing through the transition.

Ryan’s record is 34-30. Four games over .500. He has won more playoff games than Bill Belichick has since becoming Jets head coach in 2009. Now he must show that he can be the right personality and leader for the new generation of Jets. One that is preparing to do most of it’s talking on the field, not off it.

In Smith, the Jets are hoping that they can benefit from the new mobile quarterback.
Tebow’s signing never exuded that same purpose. Few if any could understand why, aside from his knack for winning in unorthodox ways, adding him made sense at all. Sanchez was fragile emotionally and certainly didn’t need Tebowmania in his face as he worked to learn a new system under Tony Sparano. The Jets needed receivers and running backs not backup quarterbacks, at the time Tebow was traded for.

The bizarre acquisition, highlighted by an unprecedented news conference for a second string player, had to mean one thing. That Woody Johnson was more concerned with riding Tebow’s popularity than he was of the downside publicly and team chemistry wise. With legions of fans and press members mocking the Jets all season long for grabbing Tebow just to capitalize financially on the attention.

All that is in the past now as Smith enters the scene while Tebow leaves it. The clown car is growing more spacious. Less bodies are jammed inside its doors. Tebow is gone. Darrelle Revis and the fear of another holdout, is gone. Tannenbaum, gone.

By this time next year the circus that defined the 2012 Jets will be a distant memory, Ryan and Sanchez may be on their last chance to blend in and be part of the new drama-less approach too, before their time is up in New York as well.

  • __fense

    The only circus last year was the media. If you recall, the only reason they had a press conference at all was because so many reporters requested it, that it would be impossible to have them just have small interviews if they wanted to interview him. Then so many reporters wanted to go to the interview that they couldn’t fit it in the normal room. This is the media causing a problem, and then bashing the Jets for it. I thought his site was above that, but apparently not.

  • joeydefiant

    The clown car is parked in Buffalo. EJ Manuel is driving. He’s driving to Foxboro to pick up some of his friends drafted a few days ago.

  • KAsh

    A clown car is how the media defined the situation. That was more entertaining than what it was: a failed experiment. The QB tandem did not work and only distracted Sanchez when he started getting into a groove.

    What has changed? You can replace “Tebow” with “Geno Smith” and most of this article would still be accurate. Except Smith seems to be emotionally sensitive, like Sanchez. The media can still describe this situation like a circus. They are all waiting for Sanchez’s high-wire act to go wrong.

    Please stay above this fray. The best thing that can happen for the Jets is still that Sanchez succeeds in his comeback. Right now, we still have three shaky QBs – Sanchez, Smith, and Garrard – but with a good year for Sanchez and a year developing Smith, we will have two good QB, one to be the face of the franchise and one to trade to the highest bidder.

  • twoshady

    I think KAsh is pitching for a job with TOJ

  • BubbaGump

    I’ve only been reading this site for a few weeks now, but this article/post is by far the worst.

    It’s poorly written and sticks with the generalities and assumptions of the standard media. That seems to go against the entire purpose of this site.

    If I didn’t see who the byline was, I’d assume this was written by Rich Cimini or Manesh Mehta.

  • Harold

    I don’t agree we have three shaky QB’s. I know one fact we have an awful QB in Sanchez who had 13 TD’s and 26 Turnovers. How you characterize Sanchez as the best hope for the Jets is ridiculous. He has never been a good QB in the NFL. He has been average at his best and downright atrocious at his worst.
    Meanwhile you say Garrard who has been solid to above average his entire career is a shaky option at QB. Based on what? A non-essential surgery he had in 2011 that had the Jaguars not wanted to make room for a disaster in Gabbert he could have put off that surgery until the off-season. He had a 4-6 week injury with the Dolphins in pre-season and had they not drafted Tannehill he would have been allowed to get healthy and reamain on the roster (Remember he was the starter until injured).
    Lastly, you state Geno is a shaky QB, huh? Unknown yes shaky based on what?

    You stretch the facts to fit you conclusions but I don’t see the clear connection.

    Our best hope is to trade Sanchez before pre-season and move with Garrard at QB, so our QB of the future can learn how to be a legit QB in the league from a veteran with solid decision making skills who has played at a Pro Bowl level. Not a never was in Sanchez.

    To your premise I say thanks but no thanks

  • Lidman

    Just for some color..in his last 2 seasons as J’Ville’s starting QB, Garrard had 38 TDs, 25 INTs and 25 Fumbles. He hasn’t played in 2yrs, and we expect him to get better?

    Jet fans should be hoping Sanchez rises to the challenge here and Geno develops with him. Throw Smith to the wolves too early and in 4yrs we’ll be calling for some QB, who’s only a Soph/Jr in HS now. I don’t care who wins out, but I certainly don’t want to see Sanchez walk away and become productive somewhere else because it makes things easier for Geno. Think about it, maybe if there was a real challenger around 4yrs ago, Sanchez would be thriving.

  • KAsh

    Garrard had two serious injuries: his knee and his back. His first one, the one with the Jags, was serious, as he himself admitted he could not play. He got both of them in the preseason, i.e. before playing a single game. He has not played in the league since 2010. He has been out of action for three years! That is why many peg Sanchez as beating Garrard, since playing QB is not like riding a bike.

    Smith is new. This is more debatable, but I think he needs to sit on the bench until he is ready. The worst scenario is if he has to suddenly fill in for an injured Garrard. Unfortunately, an injured Garrard is very likely.

    I never said Sanchez was the hope of this team. But he will cost us regardless of if we cut him or not. Why not wish for the best: that he gets his act together and we get something in a trade for him?

  • http://www.earnonlinemoneyblog.com corey

    I really hope Sanchez comes out and plays solid. For the first time in his career the jets have a quality offensive coordinator calling plays. Have a good year just so you can shut people up please Sanchez.

    Did anybody realize that Bradford wasn’t exactly a stud with shottenheimer? Mark my words.. Sanchez will win the starting job and keep it. Then he will be traded and we’ll have so many draft picks I cant wait.

  • simplysimon2

    Joe, Hire KAsh and fire TJ.

  • Harold

    Lidman and KAsh:

    Lidman I will start with you so you are telling me Garrard has to get better? You give Garrard stats while ignoring Sanchez’s. Sanchez has 39 TD’s and 36 INT’s with 24 Fumbles in last two years.

    Garrard Career 89 TD’s vs 54 INT’s with 44 Fumbles-
    Sanchez Career 68 TD’s vs 69 INT’s and 43 fumbles.

    So I know who I would rather have. In addition Garrard gave you over 600 yards rushing. You need to stop wishing that a really bad QB will suddenly become good. While trying to bash a really solid QB with a much better completion percentage, TD to INT ratio and additional threat to run the ball. Ask yourself again who needs to get better?

    Your statements asks Jets fans to hope a solid professional Pro Bowl QB will fail and the QB with the worst QBR in the NFL last year and the lowest of any starter over the last 4 years will suddenly become an above average QB. Sorry, but after 62 regular season starts and 6 playoff starts what you see is what you get.

    Kash: Garrard chose to have surgery and end his season he was being offered jobs by these teams but did not want only a back-up role.
    After his realease: Garrard received interest from the Colts, Dolphins and Raiders,[24] but decided to use his time off to have surgery on his herniated disk and prepare himself for the 2012 season.

    This was not season ending surgery he could have played the season.

    In 2012 he had a knee injury again nothing season ending.

    On August 10, 2012, Chris Mortensen of ESPN reported that Garrard would undergo arthroscopic surgery and miss some time, including all four preseason games.[27] The Dolphins released Garrard on September 4, 2012.

    He has not had any season-ending injuries, please do your homework and do not just re-post what you read on the internet. Get the facts staright. Both injuries he would have played the season but team with young 1st round QB’s decided to go in another direction.

    Lastly, I don’t wish for Sanchez to do poorly. He has simply shown himself to be a poor QB and more improtantly a poor leader. It is time to move on from this insanity.

    Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.

  • KAsh

    @Harold – I do not even have to look up Garrard’s stats over the past two years: 0 TDs, 0 INTs, and 0 yards.

    He was a pretty good QB. But he quarterbacked from his armchair the past two seasons. We have to go watch 2010 games to see him play.

    He was a dual threat. But he is 35 and had knee surgery during the last year. Arthroscopic knee surgery describes a process, but it is used on everything from removing excess matter in the joint to repairing ACLs. We do not know the extent of his injury, so we do not know what type of QB that we have. Is he a dual threat like Vick, mobile like Rothelisberger, or a statue like Palmer? Only time will tell. We have not seen him play, so no one can know what he will be like.

    Again, he is 35 and has not played for a while. Has he gotten slower? Less accurate? Can he still take a hit? Without breaking something? How about his recovery rate? Both short-term (in game) and long-term?

    Garrard was and will be a Plan B: he is there to pressure Sanchez to get better, and only if Sanchez does not will Garrard get a nod. But the ball is in the Sanchize’s court when it comes to Garrard.

  • Frank Antonelli

    Let’s not assume that Sanchez is done. Marty said that “Mark knows what I think of him”. He said it in a way that implied that he thought highly of Mark. That is my assumption and I may be wrong. However, if it is correct then the assumed demise of Sanchez is premature. As Jet fans we should hope that we can salvage something out of his career, even if a revival leads to a trade with something tangible coming back.

    P.S. The real clowns in this soap opera reside in the media tent.

  • Harold

    KAsh: You sound pretty silly, I was hoping to have football discussion you are involved in a pissing match. You say we do not have information on his knee. It was minor surgery not an ACL or reconstructive surgery.

    In 30 seconds I got this from NFL.com:
    “They have to take out loose things floating around.”

    Garrard’s agent, Al Irby, told The Associated Press that the quarterback’s knee had been an issue for a few days, and he decided to have surgery.

    “He had been feeling some soreness, and he got it looked at,” Irby said, according to The AP. “He could have played on it, but they’d rather do the surgery now to make him more comfortable, rather than fool around with it.”

    You try and shape facts to fit your argument. Please stop and get the facts to make an effective one. It makes it more interesting when you do it that way. Lastly the Sanchez exp. is over lets move on like any other team would do. I lot of players never become what we thought. We don’t need to hold on to them. Maybe he will be better somewhere else. But his time in NY is clearly up.

  • Harold

    P.S. In my previous post I mistakenly put knee surgery for his 2nd surgery it was back surgery.

  • Harold

    Sorry I am reading through my own posts to fast lol… The original post is correct.

  • KAsh

    @Harold – You keep ignoring two things. First, I do not go into details I can know nothing about. His surgeon and not his agent would have to break doctor-patient confidentiality for us to know the truth. Second, my main point has always been unanswered because you cannot answer it: How well does he play currently play football? If he is such a great QB, why did no one else want him? Why did he sign for a mere $100,000 over the veteran’s minimum?

  • Harold

    The league moves forward and I hate to say but he wanted an opportunity to compete for astarting jobs and there are not that many of those. Lastly, even though it is 2013 balck QB get many fewer opportunity in this league than white ones. He stats are as good as Carson Palmer yet he is a starter for his 3rd team (Not total number percentages) since Palmer has more starts. So please stop with the discussion about Sanchez being a better option than Garrard. This is an open competition and will be won easily by Garrard (Unless Geno blows us away) and Sanchez will likely be cut or traded before preseason.

    The question you said could not be answered (and was not asked either by the way) has been answered. Talk to you on the next thread.

  • Harold

    Sorry about the typos earlier.

    The league moves forward (the nature of the NFL,) teams always think the grass is greener. Look at the Jaguars since he left… I cringe at the thought. He also wanted an opportunity to compete for a starting job and there are not that many of those. Lastly, even though it is 2013 black QB get many fewer opportunity in this league than white ones. He stats are as good as Carson Palmer yet he is a starter for his 3rd team (Not total number, percentages) since Palmer has more starts. So please stop with the discussion about Sanchez being a better option than Garrard. This is an open competition and will be won easily by Garrard (Unless Geno blows us away) and Sanchez will likely be cut or traded before preseason.

    The question you said could not be answered (and was not asked either by the way) has been answered. Talk to you on the next thread.

  • BubbaGump

    Harold, what does Garrard being black have to do with anything? Garrard is a serviceable quarterback, i.e., a game manager, nothing more. He had a few pretty good years, but has been injured and had a few surgeries. The guy hasn’t thrown a pass in a competitive environment in almost 3 years.

    It’s amazing that you seemingly attempt to excuse Garrard’s lack of playing time these last 2 years, while at the same time ignoring the reasons for Sanchez’s failings.

    Remember when Testaverde was brought in under Parcells? He was a turnover machine! Then, with good coaching, he learned how to take care of the ball and stopped trying to force plays. I think it’s fair to say that one thing Sanchez hasn’t gotten in his 4 year career is good coaching.

    Let’s give the guy an opportunity to win the starting job fair and square and show what he can do with a good coach that actually knows something about offense and isn’t in the habit of ruining franchises or careers (Sparano and Schottenheimer).

  • Harold

    Bubba Gump: Please do not boil my argument down to race. I have posted three previous arguments none on race. I made one point about race, (which is not disputable by the way) and you jump all over it. The major difference between Sanchez and Testaverde… Nothing, Testaverde had one really good year. So we should put our future on hold and hope for one good year out of Sanchez? A terrible QB with the stats to prove it.

    My mother always said can’t make sense out of nonsense

  • KAsh

    I was not going to respond anymore. You have a weird scale of evaluation. No evidence will convince you.

    There were plenty of starting positions available. To claim the opposite is to ignore all the QBs traded this offseason. Palmer, who you compare Garrard to, was one of them. You say race in football matters then ignore the fact that Palmer is on his third team in four years. Vick is black and one of the most hated athletes in the world. But he helps the Eagles win. Tebow is white and out of the league after three years, with perhaps the best-ever winning ratio for a first-round bust. Are black QBs more criticized? Maybe. Do they get less opportunities? No.

    Contributors get more chances.

    The only sad thing about Garrard is that his best season was the year before he got the boot. It was the only year where he started all 16 games and averaged over 1 TD/game.

  • Mark Phelan

    While there are 5 QB’s on the roster no one expects any to excel in 2013.

    Getting Smith some field time – but not primary responsibility would be the best. Find out if he has the upside we need, or if we should draft another QB next year.

    I would like Sanchez to surprise us all in the new system. Have him earn some of the money he has coming.

  • Mark Phelan

    While there are 5 QB’s on the roster no one expects any to excel in 2013.

    Getting Smith some field time – but not primary responsibility would be the best. Find out if he has the upside we need, or if we should draft another QB next year.

    I would like Sanchez to surprise us all in the new system. Have him earn some of the money he has coming.

  • Harold

    KAsh: This is why I did not want to bring a nuanced argument on race into it. You would ignore all the evidence I gave. You gave no evidence to support your argument yet have the audacity to pretend as though you gave facts to support your statements. It is simply a case of distortion with your statements, facts why should you let them get in the way. I will continue to set the record straight when you post outrageous statements with no facts to support them. But until your next unsupported statement…Goodbye