Former quarterback of the New York Jets Joe Namath continues to stay in the headlines, despite not playing for them anymore thanks to his recent bold comment.
Joe Namath just happened to be accepting his Father of the Year award at the Marriott Marquis in Manhattan earlier in the week. When the Vice President of the United States, Joe Biden, was running a few minutes late, Namath stepped up to the plate.
Or more appropriately, the mic. If Namath was looking for some more attention, he went to the right place and immediately got some following his comments at the podium. Here’s what he said via an article written by Brian Heyman of Newsday.com:
“I think Geno’s going to be the starting quarterback no matter if Fitzpatrick comes back or not,” Namath told about 750 people in the ballroom for these 75th annual awards.
Oh Joe, always one to make waves with your words nowadays. As popular as Namath is and should be, not only to Jets fans everywhere, but also the general public, what he said is nonsensical.
It’s simply not true and that’s the pickle that quarterback Geno Smith is in. Despite being the starter for the Jets right now, he knows and everyone knows, as soon as Ryan Fitzpatrick comes back, if he does, he will be the starting quarterback of the Jets.
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“If he returns,” Jets coach Todd Bowles said at his end-of-year press conference, “He’ll be the starting quarterback.”
So sorry Namath, despite your public vote of confidence for Smith, if and when Fitzpatrick returns it is still his team. Which is far from a guarantee and the Jets know that more than anyone.
Although there isn’t necessarily a “drop-dead deadline” according to head coach Todd Bowles, they’re moving forward with Smith. Bowles would go on to comment about how he can only worry about and coach the players that are currently at camp. Here’s what he said thanks to the Media Relations Department of the Jets:
On how unusual he finds Ryan Fitzpatrick’s situation…
I don’t consider it unusual because a guy is not practicing. Like I said before, whether he’s injured, suspended or not here because of contractual reasons, we have to move on and coach the team. Next man up for me, so you have to treat it as business as usual. If he comes back and gets hurt the first day, he still won’t be here so we still have to get guys ready to play.
On if his demeanor will change if Fitzpatrick is still not here by July 27th…
No, it doesn’t change because like I said before, if he’s injured July 28th and he’s out for the season, I have to have the same demeanor and I got to coach the guy that’s ready to play. So I got to get guys ready to play, so it’s not going to change.
On he’s willing to allow Fitzpatrick’s situation to go into training camp unresolved…
Well if it doesn’t get resolved in the next two days, it’s going to have to I guess.
Well that is exactly what happened, Fitzpatrick remains unsigned after mandatory minicamp, and the next big date is training camp for the Jets at the end of July. So it’ll remain “full speed ahead” according to Bowles, and with Smith being in the system a year, he feels comfortable with where he’s at.