Predicting the final quarterback depth chart for 2017
By Michael Pallas
Many people are speculating that Josh McCown will start Week 1 for the New York Jets, but as Lee Corso says, “Not so fast my friend!”
The New York Jets brought in quarterback Josh McCown to be an insurance policy, albeit a relatively expensive one. Don’t read anything into Saturday’s preseason opener as an indicator of what the Jets will do come Week 1 of the regular season.
McCown is, according to those that are there, outperforming Christian Hackenberg in camp, and Bryce Petty is running a distant third. However, Hackenberg is also showing signs of improvement.
Before we just jump to the conclusion that McCown is a foregone conclusion as the Week 1 starter let’s look at some things. Let’s examine this a little deeper.
Next: 3. Josh McCown
3. Josh McCown
Yes, the Jets did sign McCown for $6 million during the offseason, but they needed a veteran presence to work with the young and inexperienced quarterbacks. They need to learn from their mistake from 2016, and not start a guy just because of the money.
McCown can teach from the sidelines. We already know what he is, because he has a body of work to show us.
He’s 18-42 as a starter, completed 59.1 percent of his passes, with 79 touchdowns and 69 interceptions. Let him be the mentor he was brought in to be.
Only bring him in if the season is completely hopeless. Let the young guys prove to you how good or bad they are before using him.
Next: 2. Bryce Petty
2. Bryce Petty
According to all accounts, quarterback Bryce Petty has been underwhelming in camp. With that said, he only has four starts (six games played), and he’s only attempted 133 passes.
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That’s not enough playing time in the NFL to determine his actual competency level as a quarterback. He needs more game time to prove whether or not he’s bad, but because he’s not been so good at camp, he has to go into the season as the backup.
If quarterback Christian Hackenberg falters, or he shows he’s not ready for the spotlight, bring Petty in to see what he’s got. Petty needs to show what he’s got before completely abandoning him.
He did complete over 60 percent of his passes at Baylor, so he deserves at least a shot. However, only if Hackenberg proves to not be ready.
Next: 1. Christian Hackenberg
1. Christian Hackenberg
Petty had his ups and downs last season, but now we need to see if Hackenberg can handle the spotlight. The Jets are rebuilding so it’s a perfect time to throw him in to see what he’s got.
He can develop a rapport with the young receivers and develop as a passer as well. Hackenberg needs to be thrown into the fire to see if he can handle real NFL game speed and both pre and post-snap reads.
Hackenberg needs to learn from real (not practice or preseason) games how to play in this league. He won’t unless given the chance. He performed well under Bill O’Brien when he ran a pro-style offense at Penn State.
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Now, let’s see if that can translate into the pros. He just needs to show the mental fortitude and awareness at this level.
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