Jets' Head Coach Says Move 'Isn't Any Long-Term Deal,' But Smith Needed To Sit

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) — It’s Michael Vick’s turn. Even though it might be too late to save the New York Jets’ season.

Rex Ryan announced Monday that Vick will start at quarterback over Geno Smith in the Jets’ game against the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday.

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“Give him an opportunity to work extensively with the first-team offense,” Ryan said, “and have Geno take a step back for the first time in his career and maybe get a different perspective of it.”

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Ryan said the decision isn’t “any long-term deal or whatever,” but added that it is “the right decision for this time.”

The Jets are mired in a seven-game skid that has them at 1-7 after a 43-23 loss to the Buffalo Bills on Sunday.

Smith, in his second season, was benched in the first quarter Sunday after throwing interceptions on three consecutive possessions. Vick took over and provided a spark, leading the Jets to a touchdown on his first drive, but also committed three turnovers of his own.

“My focus is just on Kansas City and trying to find a way to get a win,” Ryan said. “That’s why this decision was made.”

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Smith injured his right shoulder during the game when he made a touchdown-saving tackle on his final interception, but Ryan said it isn’t serious.

The Jets have been searching for a franchise quarterback since the days of Broadway Joe. Vick will become the 27th quarterback to start a game for New York since Joe Namath’s last game with the team in 1976. A few have had some good moments — Vinny Testaverde, Chad Pennington, Brett Favre and even Mark Sanchez — but none were able to sustain any level of dominance or postseason success.

Smith was given every opportunity to prove he could be that type of player after being thrust into the job when Sanchez was lost for the year during the 2013 preseason. He finished his shaky rookie season with 12 touchdowns and 21 interceptions, but had a solid final month to give the Jets some hope.

New York signed Vick in the offseason to provide some competition for Smith, but it was clear early that it was the second-year quarterback’s job all along. Still, Smith did little to reward the Jets’ faith in him as he had seven touchdown passes and 10 interceptions in eight games.

“Have there been guys that took a step back and then took a leap forward? There have been guys like that,” Ryan said. “Hopefully that’s what happens to Geno, but I don’t think anybody in this organization is looking at him differently right now.”

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