The New York Jets are not going to rush the process of naming a starting quarterback, as head coach Rex Ryan said the competition between the always-under-fire Mark Sanchez and rookie Geno Smith will probably remain open through the preseason, according to a report from Rich Cimini of ESPNNewYork.com on Wednesday.
Ryan says in Cimini's report that both Smith and Sanchez have had their good days and bad during OTAs thus far, and that a combination of their inconsistencies, as well as injuries in the receiving corps, means New York's latest quarterback saga will likely be epic in scope. The Jets begin a three-day minicamp next week before breaking until training camp, set to start in late July.
Basically, until Ryan and the Jets' coaching staff see a clear winner in this competition, there's no reason to hurry. Here's Ryan speaking to that in the report:
"I don't believe we're close to that right now. Obviously, we don't have to make that move right now. Until we feel 100 percent comfortable with that decision, we'll leave it to competition ... For me to make the decision, to say the competition is over, it will have to be 100 percent clear. If it's not, we're going to keep competing until it's clear."
As Cimini writes, the Jets don't have many healthy receivers at the moment. Santonio Holmes is recovering from foot surgery, Stephen Hill is still limited due to the after-effects of arthroscopic knee surgery, Clyde Gates has hamstring problems and Jeremy Kerley was out of Wednesday's OTA with a heel injury. So, Smith and Sanchez aren't exactly playing with a full offensive deck right now. They're also learning a different system under new offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg. It's going to take time.
Sanchez has certainly been through the ringer in New York -- Cimini's note that Sanchez has a league-worst 52 turnovers over the last two seasons just about sums it up -- but he remains confident in his ability to win the starting job.
Smith, on the other hand, is showing off his arm strength but remains a work-in-progress, as one would expect at this point.