FLORHAM PARK, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) — Coach Rex Ryan made the bold choice to stick with Mark Sanchez, and he disagrees with the notion that his future is tied to the success of the quarterback.
Just days after pulling Sanchez in favor of Greg McElroy late in the third quarter of the Jets’ 7-6 win over the Cardinals, Ryan took the podium and announced that Sanchez would again start the game under center.
“It is a decision that I feel great about,” Ryan told reporters at his news conference on Wednesday. “I had conversations with a lot of different people. I’m comfortable with the decision and I’m looking forward to watching Mark play.”
So Sanchez is keeping his job as the Jets’ starting quarterback — at least for one more week.
He has a four-game redemption period to prove that he can still be the franchise quarterback — or show the Jets that they need to look elsewhere next season. With mostly mediocre opposing defenses left on the schedule, Sanchez would appear primed to step up.
“Mark Sanchez gives us the best chance to win,” Ryan said. “(But) he has to play better and he has to protect the ball better.”
The former first-round pick had a brutal showing against Arizona this past Sunday. The fourth-year player was 10-of-21 for 97 yards, three interceptions and no touchdowns before being benched. McElroy then stepped in and went 5-for-7 for 29 yards, orchestrating the only touchdown drive of the game.
Sanchez’s coaches and many of his teammates have no doubt that Sanchez will prove himself. If he doesn’t — starting in Jacksonville on Sunday — it could cost him his job and status as the face of the franchise.
“I believe Mark has a skill set that is pretty impressive,” Ryan said. “He can make all the throws. The thing that Mark needs to do a better job of is protect the football.”
Backup quarterback Tim Tebow was limited for the second straight day with two broken ribs, and he might not be ready to go against Jacksonville.
OK, so Rex Ryan doesn’t think that his future is tied to the success of Mark Sanchez. Do you? Sound off with your thoughts and comments below…
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