Jets News

Dissecting the Jets quarterback situation after Christian Hackenberg trade

By William Cochrane
DENVER, CO - DECEMBER 10: Quarterback Josh McCown #15 of the New York Jets walks on the field between plays against the Denver Broncos at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on December 10, 2017 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - DECEMBER 10: Quarterback Josh McCown #15 of the New York Jets walks on the field between plays against the Denver Broncos at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on December 10, 2017 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images) /
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The New York Jets have officially began organized team activities as they decided to trade Christian Hackenberg to the Oakland Raiders for a draft pick and clarity around their quarterback situation.

The big news at the start of organized team activities was New York Jets general manager Mike Maccagnan’s 2016 second-round draft choice Christian Hackenberg being dealt to the Oakland Raiders for a 2019 seventh-round draft pick. During Hackenberg’s two years with the Jets, he never saw any action in a regular season game. That’s quite unusual for second round picks. Especially when the quarterbacks ahead of you led the team to the same abysmal record of five wins and eleven losses in both years.

During the team’s first day of OTA’s Hackenberg was not given any reps. According to Jets beat reporter Darryl Slater, the total rep count for the day with quarterbacks was 21 for first-round draft pick Sam Darnold. Josh McCown, who was signed to a one-year deal to play and mentor Darnold, received a total of 13 reps. The player everyone is rooting for to make a comeback, Teddy Bridgewater, saw nine reps and looked sharp.

As for who has been named the team’s starter for the upcoming 2018 season, Newsday has reported that head coach Todd Bowles named McCown as the team’s starter but would not rule out replacing him. As for now, it’s McCown’s job to lose.

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However, let’s face it. With two of the Jets first three games aired on national television to start the year off, starting Bridgewater would be the perfect quarterback to start. Not only would the Jets coaching staff and fans love to see it happen, the entire NFL would love to see Teddy on the field once again.

Granted that Darnold is the Jets future, Bridgewater winning the starting job, by all means, would benefit the Jets most out of all three quarterbacks. The outcome of a fully healthy Bridgewater playing up to his capabilities benefits the Jets immensely.

Since Darnold is the future, Bridgewater making headlines early in the season is heaven to the ears of teams that are in search of a top-notch quarterback. This was a terrific signing by Maccagnan since it could turn out to be a pleasant surprise in 2018.

With regards to the fact that the Jets are now down to just three quarterbacks on the roster, keep in mind that McCown is prone to injuries. If Bridgewater does not make it through camp, it would be wise for the Jets to start searching for a free agent quarterback to sign as insurance. Just in case one or perhaps both succumb to injury. By all means, it’s better to be safe than sorry with depth since Darnold shouldn’t be rushed in his development.

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Considering all the factors stated, we could ultimately wind up seeing the Jets No. 3 pick in this year’s draft play at some point this season. On the positive side, having Darnold see real game action before the 2019 campaign could wind up being very beneficial for the Jets. It’s all about getting real-game experience heading into the 2019 season to be more effective under center. For now, the Jets quarterback situation is a good one with McCown, Bridgewater, and Darnold leading the way.

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