Mark Sanchez has been the starting quarterback for the New York Jets in each of the last four seasons, but to make it to a fifth he'll need to win a quarterback competition. On Monday, Sanchez told Conor Orr of The Newark Star-Ledger and other members of the media that he "completely understands" the need for the competition and that he is focused on coming away the winner.
"I completely understand that and I think it'll bring out the best in everyone on our team," Sanchez said on a conference call with reporters today following voluntary workouts. "I totally respect that, as far as I'm concerned, I'm preparing to play well for this team and do the best I can. I'm preparing for my role and am doing everything in my control to be the best quarterback on the roster."
Sanchez, 26, struggled during the 2012 season, as his quarterback rating of 66.9 was the second-worst among qualifying passers. He completed just 54.3 percent of his passes with 13 touchdowns and 18 interceptions as the Jets finished the 2012 season with a 6-10 record.
The Jets have already begun the process of adding talent to compete for the starting position, as veteran quarterback David Garrard was signed by the team earlier in the offseason. In five seasons as the starter for the Jacksonville Jaguars, Garrard never finished with a quarterback rating under 80, including a rating of 102.2 in 2007, as he led the Jaguars to the divisional round of the postseason.
Also expected to compete with Sanchez for the role is third-year quarterback Greg McElroy, who made his first career start in 2012. McElroy finished the season with 19-of-31 passes completed for 214 yards with a touchdowns and an interception.