Yesterday, Rex Ryan announced that Mark Sanchez will start this week’s game against the Jacksonville Jaguars. The 2-10 Jaguars are one of the league’s worst teams. Led by Chad Henne, the Jags boast an array of uninspiring wide receivers and a very mediocre backfield. Maurice Jones-Drew has missed nearly the entire season and is not expected to play this week. However, the hapless Jags may have a shot at home against the reeling Mark Sanchez and the slow-moving Jet offense. Current NFL betting picks have the Jets pegged a 2.5 point road favorite, but that line may surprise some people. Henne has shown the ability to put up big numbers and the Jets won’t face Ryan Lindley each week.
Starting Mark Sanchez is the right move from both a football and financial standpoint. The Jets owe Sanchez a guaranteed $8.2 million next season, so based on pure dollars alone, he should start. In addition, the Jets don’t have servicable backup quarterback. Tim Tebow clearly isn’t an option and Greg McElroy is nothing more than a backup. Sure, McElroy led the game winning drive against Arizona, but his talent doesn’t jump off the page. Sanchez should start, but it reminds to be seen if he’ll finish the game.
Week 13 Update:
Mark Sanchez’s career has reached an all-time low. After throwing three, first half interceptions and failing to generate any points, the Jets benched Sanchez in favor of Greg McElroy mid-way through the third quarter. Each of Sanchez’s three interceptions was pretty ugly. On his first pass attempt, Arizona deployed pressure up the middle and Sanchez threw a floating pass off his back foot. Ex-Jet Kerry Rhodes jumped the pass and intercepted the ball. Two drives later, Rhodes once against picked off Sanchez to close out the first quarter. Sanchez was targeting Jeff Cumberland on a deep drag route, but the ball was underthrown and undercut by Rhodes. To close out the first half, Sanchez threw a deep post route to Chaz Schillens, but Patrick Peterson wrestled the ball away from Schillens and came away with the interception. After three unsuccessful second half drives, Sanchez was benched and McElroy led the Jets to the victory.
Sanchez’s decision making was very poor and he continued to revert back to the same mistakes. Sanchez refuses to throw the ball away when there’s no play and opts to throw off his back foot when he’s in trouble. It’s baffling how much Sanchez has regressed as a passer.
Week 14 Update:
Mark Sanchez’s job is safe for at least another week. Greg McElroy did not dress after last week’s impressive showing, confirming the Jets’ decision to stick with Sanchez. Sanchez’s afternoon got off to a shaky start after Jason Babin sacked Sanchez and stripped the ball. Afterwards, the Jets’ play calling became ultraconservative. Tony Sparano didn’t give Sanchez too many opportunities to make plays. Sanchez looked tentative in the pocket and had trouble completing passes in excess of 15 yards. During the fourth quarter, Sanchez completed his longest pass play of the game. Sanchez completed a 37-yard pass down the seam to a wide open Jeff Cumberland for a first down. Overall, Sanchez effectively managed the game and spent most of the afternoon handing the ball off to his running backs. Dustin Keller was inactive and Stephen Hill left with an injury, so Sanchez is clearly lacking weapons.