Can Geno Smith Start Week 1 for the New York Jets? It Will be a Tale of Two Philosophies


May 22, 2013; Florham Park, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Geno Smith (7) speaks with members of the media after the New York Jets organized team activities at the Atlantic Health Jets Training Center. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

It’s very early, but Geno Smith has been doing all of the right things so far. He has been doing extra classroom work, especially with his offensive linemen. He also has performed fairly well at camp so far, although he and Mark Sanchez threw underwhelming interceptions last week. Geno has also showed that he can handle the media so far. He does not take the bait when the media goes “fishing” for circus-like controversy.

But the question is, and the one that remains is, can Geno win this job outright, and be the starter when the Jets take on Tampa Bay in week one?

The answer to that one will not come without a coming to a head of 2 different philosophies. Whose? The philosophies of head coach Rex Ryan, and general manager John Idzik.

Let me tell you what I mean. Don’t get me wrong, ladies and gentlemen. Both of these two men are doing, and saying the right things. John has talked over and over again how much he has enjoyed working with Rex Ryan to date. They have been “joined at the hip”, as Idzik put it at one point. The point being that he has gone on and on about how they are on the same page about everything.

We know that coach Ryan is never shy about praising, and that has been the case when talking about his relationship with Idzik as well. He talks about how he and John have a similar background with having Dads that were in the game. He says that everything each of them does is right on the same page, the page of making the New York Jets a better team. Everything is for the good of the New York Jets.

Unfortunately, all of that being true is just not logical.

Well let me put it this way, the fact that they both are working for the good of the football team is logical. What ISN’T logical is the idea that they are on the same page in every way possible about making that goal happen. It just doesn’t make any sense.

John Idzik hasn’t been in his position for six months. He is in no way, shape, or form, on a short leash. Idzik will have multiple years to prove his worth before he has to answer with his job. Therefore, yes, John’s focus is on making the team better, but better in the long-term. He doesn’t have to win now.

Rex Ryan, on the other hand, is the definition of a lame duck coach. It is not normal for a general manager to be forced to keep an incumbent coach as a condition of his hire. John is going to want to bring a guy in that he is comfortable with. The only way for Rex to fight this problem is to win. Do you think he will be OK with turning the reigns over to another rookie quarterback unless he is absolutely sure? I don’t.

So this is where the philosophies will come to a head. Will Idzik’s forward thinking win out, or will Rex be able to keep a strangle hold on the situation? The decision will certainly bring that elephant in the room to the forefront, and fast.