Quarterback Bryce Petty of the New York Jets shined against the Washington Redskins. He must continue to show the Jets that he doesn’t only belong on the final roster but is important for the future.
With the preseason now underway, the New York Jets have just a few weeks left to find out how many quarterbacks they’ll be keeping on the roster. As Ryan Fitzpatrick is locked in as the starter, the attention has now turned to the embattled Geno Smith, rookie Christian Hackenberg and of course, Bryce Petty.
Smith performed well enough in a Thursday night victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars to earn more reps. However, after a shaky showing against the Washington Redskins (6 for 13, 47 yards and an interception), it wouldn’t necessarily send shock-waves around the NFL if he was to be cut. Especially in favor of the two other quarterbacks currently on the roster of the Jets.
With that being said, it doesn’t look good for the Jets if an injury forces Fitzpatrick to miss playing time. If they had to call on either Hackenberg or Petty to start with no regular season experience, it could have disastrous results. Heck, Hackenberg has yet to take a single snap in the preseason football.
Throughout the offseason, the message has been clear that Hackenberg will be a healthy scratch during the regular season. He will be red-shirted for the entire campaign which leaves Petty or Smith as the odd man out if they decide to go with three quarterbacks instead of four. The preseason is seen as a waste of time, not only by fans but some players as well, not for Smith though. He’s auditioning for his job and to 31 other NFL teams in case someone comes calling.
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In his first appearance of the year against the Jaguars, Petty went for an unspectacular 7 of 14 for 93 yards and no touchdowns.
In the build up to this game, Petty was talking up a storm, even saying he was going to put on quite a show, similar Brett Favre.
Exactly what he meant by that, we don’t know but his performance was certainly not Favre like.
In fact, it wasn’t bad Favre or classic Favre.
What it was in the grand scheme of things was an average performance. Against a third string Jaguars’ defense, the Jets and fans were expecting more. Well, we certainly got more in his second preseason appearance against the Redskins on the road.
On a night when Fitzpatrick and Smith failed to put points on the board with six drives, it fell on Petty to change that. And oh boy, he did just that. With a 12 point defect in the 3rd quarter, Petty lit a fire under this team and came just short of a come from behind win by throwing two touchdowns, going 16 of 26 for 242 yards.
This was a great night for Petty, but it was by no means perfect. He made mistakes. There were avoidable sacks he took and several short throws that should have been completed but despite this, it was the game he needed to have and certainly made Bowles’ quarterback decision more difficult.
Aug 19, 2016; Landover, MD, USA; New York Jets quarterback Bryce Petty (9) attempts a pass against the Washington Redskins during the second half at FedEx Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports
Bowles has confessed that Hackenberg wasn’t ready for the bright lights against the Jaguars, which prompted a heavier workload for Petty. We we were all expecting Hackenberg to come in at least for a part of the 4th quarter, but it didn’t happen. This was an interesting decision by Bowles, eager to see more of his second year quarterback rather than his raw rookie.
Petty’s potential has certainly got Bowles thinking and if he has another strong showing against the New York Giants in Week 3, it could very well spell the end for Smith if he decides to take us all on the Genocoaster once again.
The decision on Petty won’t likely be made until the end of the preseason. He’ll get more time on the field during the 4th and final preseason game against the Philadelphia Eagles, sharing time with Hackenberg, or at least you’d think considering he’s yet to make an appearance thus far. This is the game where he’ll need to take full advantage of the opportunity in front of him with a take no prisoners approach as there’s a small chance he’ll get very few snaps against the Giants due to extended reps for the first and second team offense. However, Petty could be taking two team reps by then. Isn’t it exciting when we have a real quarterback controversy?
Quarterbacks are always under pressure, whether that’s to protect their job or have something to prove to the critics with a chip on their shoulder. Petty is officially on the hot seat with a fire surrounding him that’ll only continue to burn until he shows the Jets why he deserves a spot on the final roster come September. He may very well have done just that against the Redskins. Only time will tell as all eyes continue to be on Petty.