New York Jets: Christian Hackenberg could be future of franchise
The New York Jets might have found a future franchise quarterback but only time will tell in how Christian Hackenberg will develop as an NFL quarterback.
There were many choices to choose from after the top two quarterbacks went in 2016 NFL Draft, no one knew who would go after Carson Wentz or Jared Goff. The Jets have been looking for a franchise quarterback for the past few seasons and have struck out.
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It has been rough for the Jets because of not having someone stable under center and not knowing what to do consistently. They have gone quite through many players under center and are getting frustrated with not having someone consistent enough to bring long-term success.
This year, many people believed the Jets could go after a quarterback, but there were many other areas on the team that they needed to focus on. With their second round draft pick, the Jets selected Hackenberg who was a big surprise that many thought he would be drafted later on.
Hackenberg has shown plenty of potential early on in his college career but these past two seasons he has taken a few steps back and has not been the same. When he earned the starting position as a true freshman, he learned the very same pro-style offense that was used with Tom Brady in New England.
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Under former head coach Bill O’Brien, he had Hackenberg playing at an all-time high with throwing 20 touchdowns to 10 interceptions and had a great target in Allen Robinson.
At the age of 18-years-old, he was already being discussed in the same sentence as Andrew Luck.
At the time that was a big deal and the sky’s the limit for him, as he can thrive with the right coaching around him.
When O’Brien left, Hackenberg regressed with the new coaching staff the past two seasons.
He didn’t get much support from his surroundings, with questionable play calling and not having consistent players around him. Even though Hackenberg didn’t have enough support, he took a lot of flack for the failures of the team, which he accepted due to being a natural born leader.
When he was in the locker room, many turned to him to help them get through their overall struggles. He has the toughness with the size to take the consistent punishment and will be able to bounce back mentally, as he proved with his time at Penn State.
He was always able to handle adversity with problems going on at the school. He hasn’t missed a start these past three seasons which is an impressive stat. If he is able to surround himself with the right personnel on the Jets, than he could possibly become the star player he once was.
He also has a very high football IQ which will help his transition into the NFL with how well he handles audibles under center. With Hackenberg, he is able to see and understand how to handle himself in any given situation.
The Jets need someone that can do well in the pocket and thrive under pressure, which is what they’re hoping to develop with Hackenberg. He has the arm talent to be a dangerous pro quarterback who can make all the throws.
What the Jets liked about him was toughness and how he was a three-year starter for a troubled program. What they also liked was that he was not scared of playing hurt and went out there for his team day in and day out. He also has a huge upside in him developing himself into an elite player, especially with quality talent around him.
His field vision and progressions are very well handled. He has a lot of attributes that many teams love but his only problem is him putting it all together. He just needs to go back to the way he was playing early on his college career. If he is able to build up his confidence that this is now a clean slate, then the Jets might as well have gotten a steal in this year’s draft.
Overall, Hackenberg has a chance to develop himself into a special player for the Jets. If everything falls into place, there is no reason as to why he shouldn’t be an excellent quarterback. He needs to continue to fix his mechanics’s in order to be successful in the NFL.
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If Hackenberg isn’t rushed into becoming a starter than he will be able to be successful. He has the chance to earn his way to be a great player through patience, hard work and working with his mentors. It will be interesting to see how the Jets handle his situation as they need to handle it very carefully for it to work for the future.