Rex Ryan on the Change of Quarterback to Michael Vick
Oct 26, 2014; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterbackMichael Vick
(1) throws the ball during the second quarter against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports
We all know the news by now, Michael Vick is starting at quarterback next week when the Jets head to Arrowhead to face the Kansas City Chiefs. So of course, that was the topic of the day when Rex Ryan took to the microphone for his day after the game press conference. Here is what he had to say on the subject of Vick, courtesy of the team:
On if John Idzik had an influence on the decision… This is a team decision. You already know the answer to it when you ask the question, but it’s a team decision and that’s the way it is.
On if the decision will be a week-to-week decision… I am not looking past this week. It truly is about this week and, it’s not any long-term deal or whatever. I guess right now, the long term is this week. That’s how I am looking at it.
On why now is the time to make the change… I think when Mike came into the game I thought it did give us a spark. I felt the energy on the sideline, and I think given an opportunity, that he really hasn’t been given, which is to really run with the first team all week, that we will see how it plays out.
On if he wished he made the change a few weeks earlier… I think when you look back on it, especially this past one, I think Geno had a tremendous game against New England. I felt great about it. I really thought we were going to have a great game this week, and clearly that didn’t happen. Our execution was off to say the least. I am not going to spend a whole lot of time going back and thinking well I should have done this or whatever. I think this is the right decision at this time.
Oct 26, 2014; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterbackGeno Smith
(7) throws the ball against the Buffalo Bills during the first quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports
On if Smith was fully prepared for this game… Yeah, I thought we had a great week of preparation, and a long time of preparation, the entire football team. I really thought we were going to have a great game. I really believed we were going to have a great game.
On if Smith is a franchise quarterback… Well of course you hope a young quarterback could be that guy. He had a poor game, there is no doubt, he had a very poor game. Have there been guys that take a step back to take a leap forward? There have been guys like that. Hopefully that’s what happens to Geno. Again, I don’t think anybody in this organization is looking at him differently right now.
On if he expects Smith to be on the field in meaningful action this season… Anything past Kansas City I am not looking at. So, I know right now everything is about Kansas City, and obviously, trying to find a way to win. But, I can’t tell you who we play after Kansas City or anything else. So, that focus is right on Kansas City.
On how he can say nobody is looking differently at Smith… The question was about the long term, and could he possibly be a franchise quarterback. I don’t think a bad outing like this is going to have any determination on somebody’s long-term opinion on somebody. I don’t think that happens. If it does, its pretty naive. Because there are ups and downs, peaks and valleys (for) all quarterbacks, especially young quarterbacks. I think Ryan Leaf out played Peyton Manning in the first game. I think he threw for 300 yards. Probably the only time he threw for 300 yards.
Oct 26, 2014; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets head coach Rex Ryan (R) stands on the sidelines during the second quarter against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports
For one thing, this showed that Rex Ryan was allowed to make the call on the quarterback. Many were concerned that the call was not his, it belonged to John Idzik. Had Geno Smith been placed back in the starting position, it would have had Idzik’s footprints all over it. Rex knows that his team needs to get some wins, and Michael Vick is the answer, at least for this week.
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Vick did cause a spark in the team yesterday. He led a couple of scoring drives, but that was just part of it. The offense finally had some life to it, when he came into the game. Vick made something out of nothing, to the tune of leading the team in rushing. There was clearly a huge difference when Vick entered the game, and Ryan had really no choice to make. Vick was the only answer.
With the job being only an appointment for this week, Michael Vick can still earn the job the rest of the way. Frankly, I am not sure that going back to Geno Smith this year, barring an injury, will be accepted within the Jets fan base. Letting Geno sit for the rest of the season might be the best for him, but we shall see what happens.