Christian Hackenberg shows he’s capable of being starter
By Michael Pallas
Quarterback Christian Hackenberg has gotten reps with the first team at New York Jets training camp over the last two days, and it’s a good sign.
Quarterback Christian Hackenberg‘s performance may be a little shaky, but he’s in his second year with the New York Jets, and that should be expected. According to ESPN’s Rich Cimini, his unofficial stats are 50% completions, two touchdowns, and four interceptions.
Upon the first examination of numbers, it looks bad. However, when you examine what Cimini wrote about the passes, it may be good that he’s making the mistakes in practice, and they are fixable with film study and coaching.
The first observation by Cimini on Tuesday was as follows:
Maye, continuing to impress, read Hackenberg’s eyes and jumped the route. Afterward, Hackenberg said he was proud of the way he responded for the remainder of practice.
Based on Hackenberg’s own assessment, if he was able to bounce back, that’s actually a good sign. That means he’s not holding on to mistakes and putting the past behind him.
Cimini’s observations from Wednesday are as follows:
"He was intercepted by (a possible miscommunication with the receiver) and . On the latter play, he tried to fit it into a tight window to rookie tight end Jordan Leggett, and the throw was slightly behind him. Rontez Miles Dexter McDougle"
If Cimini’s assessment of the first throw is correct, that’s could just be a sign of not working with the receiver all that often. Since he didn’t mention the receiver by name, it’s hard to know if it’s someone he has worked with that was also bumped up to first-team reps or not.
If the second pass assessment is correct, it’s likely that Hackenberg was just being too aggressive. The fact that he’s being aggressive is a good thing. He’s willing to take a chance, and he just needs to learn when to take them or not.
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Some look at the interceptions at camp as a bad sign. They’re not all a bad sign. They’re just a young guy making typical young quarterback mistakes.
He’s showing signs of maturity by shaking off mistakes, and he’s showing signs of a willingness to take chances.
Sometimes a quarterback will be in a situation where he has no choice but to take a chance, and you need him to be willing to do so in those spots and not be tentative.
Football isn’t about numbers, but in this analytics-driven society, we tend to weigh numbers too heavily sometimes. You can look deeper than the numbers and see a guy who needs some growth while also showing signs of ability.
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