Chan Gailey: Is Geno Smith his greatest challenge ever?


Chan Gailey has been coaching since 1974 and has quite the resume. He’s handled a ton of responsibilities from being an assistant coach, head coach and most often as an offensive coordinator for various teams across the football world. Now with the New York Jets, Gailey has probably the biggest challenge of his incredible coaching career in turning the career of quarterback Geno Smith into a much better direction. Will he be the one true coach that can finally get through to Smith and have him play up to his potential?

It’s no secret that when you mention Smith’s name to any fan of the Jets, they tend to cringe at the idea of him being their starting quarterback yet again heading into the upcoming season. From turnovers, terrible decisions on the field and the fact that he looks confused most of the time when running the Jets’ offense, Smith has a long way to go to erase the memories of his past and create better ones this time around.

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Gailey has a golden opportunity to add another notch to his belt if he’s able to be the right kind of coach and mentor to Smith. It’s in the opinion of many that perhaps Smith was rattled early on in his NFL career due to being prematurely thrown to the wolves as a starter the year he was drafted. He never had an opportunity to learn the game from the sidelines or under a proven veteran quarterback that was able to show him the ropes by getting the job done consistently in front of him as he rode the bench.

So far, Smith has done decent in organized team activities but once again, he’s starting to throw interceptions. Of course it’s early but after a few OTAs, he bounced back nicely and was said to have shown slight improvement. Gailey knows that the upcoming season rides on the performance of Smith under center since even though Ryan Fitzpatrick is familiar with his spread offensive system, it’s ideal that Smith steps up and delivers in his third year in the NFL.

Smith is fully aware that it’s time to deliver or face the utter reality that he’s not starting quarterback material. Gailey has historically been known to get the most out of his players by making plays and systems that cater to their strengths so it’ll be a huge challenge to make sure Smith understands everything to deliver.

Considering that Smith has experience in college running a spread offense, Gailey should be able to get him to look better than ever before in 2015. Gailey has so far installed a system to not only put Smith in a position to succeed but also do his part to improve an offense that should be more efficient when scoring actual touchdowns this upcoming season.

It’s probably his greatest challenge yet but Gailey knows if he can turn Smith into a Pro Bowl-caliber quarterback, there is no telling how far the Jets will go once all is said and done.

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