NEW YORK (WFAN) — Geno Smith hasn’t officially been named the Jets’ starting quarterback for Week 1, although we all know it’s his job to lose.
Nothing changed on Thursday night. Yeah, Michael Vick kept a 14-play, 80-yard touchdown drive alive with his feet against the Indianapolis Colts. But Smith showed he could scramble, too.
Bottom line: there’s not much to see here. At least not yet.
“Nah, we don’t (have a QB controversy),” Manish Mehta, Jets beat reporter for the Daily News, told WFAN’s Steve Somers after New York’s 13-10 win. “And I’ve said all along, it’s really not about what Mike Vick does in the preseason. You know what Mike Vick is; he will make some electrifying plays. He had that nice 15-yard scramble on third down during that touchdown drive, had a couple of third-down conversions, even had a fourth-down conversion. And he marched them down the field.
“That’s who Mike Vick is. He didn’t forget how to throw. He has a better spiral and a stronger arm than Geno Smith. We already knew that. We knew that months ago when they signed him.”
The 34-year-old Vick (3 of 6 for 17 yards, three rushes for 19 yards) got the crowd going in his first drive. He couldn’t muster up anything in his next and final series, a three-and-out with the backups.
Vick’s stat lines probably won’t matter much unless his 23-year-old understudy crashes and burns. Mehta said these exhibitions will be more about the development of Smith, who led the team to a surprising 8-8 finish last season and is listed as No. 1 on the depth chart.
“He clearly did not fall flat on his face (Thursday night),” Mehta said. “He really didn’t do that much one way or the other. It was probably as nondescript of a performance as you can get. But as long as he doesn’t collapse over these next couple weeks, he’s going to be the Week 1 starter, no matter what Mike Vick does in these preseason games.”
Smith started the game and was 4 of 6 for 33 yards during two drives with the first team. The second-year quarterback, who has said he’s more comfortable now rushing the ball, added 10 yards on one carry.
He showed some early signs of chemistry with free-agent addition Eric Decker, who caught two short passes for 12 yards. Stephen Hill, on the other hand, was a ghost.
“It’s way too premature to make any kind of snap-judgments on how he’s playing,” Mehta said of Smith. “He had a nice 10-yard run on a zone-read play. He had two series, and he led them to three points — one scoring drive out of two. So it’s not terrible. You’ll get a better indication next week in Cincinnati, and really see two and a half quarters out of him — I would imagine — a couple weeks from now when they play the Giants at MetLife Stadium. So it’s way too early.”
Listen to get Mehta’s thoughts on Hill, Chris Johnson, Jace Amaro, Dee Milliner, Chris Ivory’s injury and what could end up being the Jets’ biggest problem area: