NY Jets: Preparing for life without Ryan Fitzpatrick
The NY Jets might soon realize what life is like without quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick but in the grand scheme of it all, it might not be such a bad breakup over time.
Last season with Fitzpatrick under center, the Jets had a magical season that truly broke the record books. Fitzpatrick broke the all-time franchise record of touchdowns in a season at 31 and gave Jets fans all over the world a whole lot to cheer for as he almost brought them to the NFL Playoffs via a Wild Card berth.
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As free agency is currently underway, the Jets and Fitzpatrick are still far apart on a new deal to keep him in the city that never sleeps. On one side of the spectrum, Fitzpatrick put up the best season of his career and did everything in his power to have the Jets be a contender again. He deserves a pay raise and long-term deal since he went above and beyond expectations.
Nov 29, 2015; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick (14) looks down field In the first half at MetLife Stadium.The Jets defeated the Dolphins 38-20. Mandatory Credit: William Hauser-USA TODAY Sports
On the other side of the spectrum, Fitzpatrick put up one of his worst games of the season in a game with everything on the line in their season finale against the Buffalo Bills. All the Jets had to do was win and get in but unfortunately, Fitzpatrick and the Jets fell short of making it by putting up a horrendous performance.
In that game against the Bills, Fitzpatrick totaled 16/37 completions, 181 passing yards, two touchdowns and three interceptions. He forced his throws and the turnovers were a big part of ending the season early for the Jets.
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At this point in time, rumors are circulating that the Jets are hoping to bring back Fitzpatrick but their patience is wearing thin with his demands for a big-money contract.
The Jets are also in talks to possibly trade for Colin Kaepernick or even sign Robert Griffin III.
One can understand why he wants a bigger payday but reality has to sink in at some point for him. Fitzpatrick is 33-years-old and was a product of great timing, a true supporting cast and an offensive playbook catered to his strengths thanks to coordinator Chan Gailey.
There is no sweeter situation to be in than with the Jets in 2016 but if he continues to be stubborn in coming to terms with the team that gave him everything he needed to thrive, a tough breakup might be hard to get over at first. Remember though, life without Fitzpatrick won’t be so bad after the initial sting goes away and the full offseason strategy comes to fruition by the Jets after free agency and the 2016 NFL Draft class starts to make the transition into training camp.
Whether it’s Kaepernick, Griffin, giving the keys back to Geno Smith or even having a full out competition this summer to determine who will be starting under center, the Jets’ offense will be just fine. Sure, Gailey will have to change things up a bit but make no mistake about it, the Jets’ defense will be the strength of the team in addition to what should be a potent running game.
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Overall, Fitzpatrick should probably come up with a decision sooner than later before he finds himself with no contending team and back to being the journeyman that he has been his entire career. No matter what happens, remember, with this new leadership regime in place with the Jets, everything will be just fine. Time heals everything and life without Fitzpatrick won’t be so bad once the Jets show the football world they can still win plenty of football games without their bearded wonder.