Overreaction to the Depth Chart for New York Jets’ Preseason Game One


Jul 28, 2013; Cortland, NY, USA; New York Jets quarterbacks Mark Sanchez (left) and Geno Smith (right) prepare to take snaps from under center during training camp at SUNY Cortland. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

OK folks, time for another heart to heart with your friendly editor, Alan. I know we have done this in the recent past, but it is high time to do it again. I am worried about many in the fan base these days, and the reason? People are overreacting to small things about the upcoming game against the Lions. The Jets give us enough stress where it is WARRANTED, let’s not give ourselves extra stress by worrying about things that aren’t necessary.

Let me tell you what I mean.

Yesterday, during his press conference following practice, Rex Ryan announced that Mark Sanchez would start the game Friday night against the Lions. However, he quickly went on to say that Geno Smith would ALSO see time with the starting group. He wanted to make that point so clear, he even stated that the starters may play longer than normal, just to accommodate giving reps to both quarterbacks.

But, that STILL wasn’t enough for Jets fans to relax. Debate went on for a good long while after that decision came out. “Why is Mark starting? What are they doing to Geno? Why isn’t Geno getting the start? We know what Mark is. Geno should start. Oh, it’s fine, they are only doing it because Mark is the incumbent”. It went on and on and on.

Here is my question. Who cares? It’s not like he said that Geno would not play with the starting group at all, and that only Mark would. He said they both would play with the ones. So, essentially, the fan base was debating WHO SHOULD PLAY WITH THE STARTERS…FIRST! Are you kidding me? This is what people are worried about. Both guys are going to get a fair chance, that is all that should matter, ladies and gentlemen.

First of all, someone has to start the game. They may be in competition, but they both can’t be in the game at the same time, obviously. Someone is going to start. Again, Geno is going to play with the first team as well. It makes no difference which series it is, as long as they are both playing with the ones.

One person commented to me via Twitter, to paraphrase, how does it help Geno if he is going to face Detroit’s number twos? First of all, ANY reps that Geno gets are going to help him. He has never played in an NFL game. No matter which group of Lions is in there, the speed will be different from what he faced in college. NFL game speed is different, I don’t care if he was going against fourth stringers.

This is the first preseason game. Calm down.

By the way, how do we know that Smith will not face the Detroit ones? Rex might switch Mark and Geno off over a couple of series. We don’t know. Also, both teams schedule the day’s events. Maybe Rex called Jim Schwartz to coordinate things. It’s the preseason, it could happen.

Calm down everyone, it will work out.

This overreaction spilled out to other positions, although not within the fan base. I actually saw a headline yesterday that read, “Dee Milliner Wins Starting Job”. Seriously? Starting week one of preseason means nothing. Rex can’t change the depth chart? I didn’t realize that. It’s unbelievable.

The bottom line? Relax everyone. It’s only been two weeks of practice, and the first preseason game. Calm down, things will work out.