The New York Jets inconsistency in the 2013 season has led the team to a 5-6 record, just one game out of the playoffs (because the Baltimore Ravens won Thursday). Much of this erratic gameplay can be accredited to the Jets starting quarterback, Geno Smith as he is seen as the leader of the team.
Smith has thrown for 2,227 yards with eight touchdowns, 18 interceptions, and four fumbles lost through the first 11 games of the season. To put this into perspective, Andrew Luck, Russell Wilson, and Mike Glennon have a combined 18 interceptions in 30 games. The West Virginia product has also been benched by coach Rex Ryan twice in his rookie year, struggling to make passes to wide open receivers and showing poor decision making.
The Jets backup quarterback is Matt Simms whom has been subbed in for Smith. In his limited snaps, he has shown potential. Simms is 7-for-13 with 77 passing yards, a touchdown, and most importantly no turnovers in those two games. The question that keeps circulating around the Jets is which quarterback actually gives New York the best chance at succeeding.
Coach Rex Ryan still believes that Smith a player they invested a second round pick in April’s NFL Draft, gives the Jets a better chance at locking up the second Wild Card spot as opposed to Simms who was an undrafted free agent out of Tennessee. Smith has failed to throw over 215 yards seven times not to mention he has only broken the 300 yard barrier once. He has only played in one game where he did not turn the ball over once and that was against the New Orleans Saints and yet he only threw for 115 yards.
There has been only one game where Smith has actually deserved the win and that was on Monday Night Football against the Atlanta Falcons. Although he didn’t eclipse 200 passing yards, he led the Jets on a last-minute drive and set up Nick Folk for the game winning field goal that looked like he was a composed veteran.
There are times where simply Smith also looks lost on the field. His confusion is clearly shown as he makes a ton of errors that lead to turnovers and even worse touchdowns off of these turnovers including a gift wrapped pick six to Buffalo Bills safety Da’Norris Searcy.
The Jets are quickly falling out of playoff contention, scoring 17 points in the last two games combined. Smith also has not thrown a single passing touchdown in the last four games and only has one in his past six games. The Jets are timid to bench Smith because they believe it will ruin him, but he has done nothing but hurt the team in the last few weeks. The team needs to draft a quarterback in the upcoming 2014 NFL Draft is high even with their first round pick. The good news for the Jets is that the draft is filled with prospects like Teddy Bridgewater, AJ McCarron, Tajh Boyd, and many others.
If the Jets stick with Smith, their playoff chances will diminish quickly, as teams now have film on him having bad games and will exploit that in the future.
They don’t have a great idea of what Simms can bring to the table, so trying him out over the next few games could turn out to help the Jets, earning some wins when the team needs them the most. Smith has struggled mightily in his rookie year while Simms has performed at a solid level in the limited exposure he has received.