Ryan Fitzpatrick signed with the New York Jets this past offseason in free agency in hopes that he could win the starting job over Geno Smith. He didn’t look like a very good bet to do that until Geno Smith was pronounced out for 6-10 weeks due to a broken jaw from a locker room fight. Now, the starting quarterbacks job is reportedly his to lose moving forward.
Here’s what you need to know about Geno Smith’s timetable for return: It doesn’t really matter. This is Ryan Fitzpatrick’s job to lose now.
— Manish Mehta (@MMehtaNYDN) August 14, 2015
Needless to say, this is good news for the veteran quarterback out of Harvard. He just finished up a season with the Houston Texans where he showed flashes of brilliance, but those flashes were nowhere near consistent enough.
Last season with the Texas, Fitzpatrick ended up throwing for 2,483 yards, 17 touchdowns and just eight interceptions. He is the definition of a game manager, and the Jets could certainly use a quarterback that takes better care of the football. Fitzpatrick isn’t, however, the type of quarterback that can power a team to the playoffs.
At 32 years old, he doesn’t have a lot of time left in his NFL career. He is looking to finish his career off as a veteran mentor for younger quarterbacks, or as a starter. New York gave him the opportunity to do both of those things, and he is more than happy to be starting although he likely wishes the situation was different.
All of that being said, it will be interesting to see how he plays in Smith’s absence. New York needs him to be sharp right off the bat, and to be a leader for the offense. He’ll have quite a few weapons to work with, and there are no excuses for poor play with the offense that the Jets have put together.