NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The Jets are in the market — again — for a quarterback to challenge Geno Smith for the No. 1 job.
But … who?
New York’s rookie general manager Mike Maccagnan was reportedly eyeing Brian Hoyer, but the 29-year-old will become a member of the Houston Texans with free agency set to begin Tuesday afternoon, according to Albert Breer of the NFL Network.
Other reports say the Jets aren’t completely out of the running for Hoyer’s services:
The Jets were also keeping tabs on Houston quarterback Ryan Mallett, who has reportedly agreed to re-sign with the Texans.
Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News reported Monday that the Jets are targeting Ryan Fitzpatrick, who could be the odd man out in Houston’s QB shuffle. The 32-year-old veteran has a 33-55-1 record in 89 starts with St. Louis, Cincinnati, Buffalo, Tennessee and the Texans.
Fitzpatrick has ties to Maccagnan — hired this offseason after 15 years rising through the ranks of the Texans’ front office — and Jets offensive coordinator Chan Gailey, who was the quarterback’s head coach for three years with the Bills.
Fitzpatrick has thrown for at least 3,000 yards and over 20 touchdowns only three times, all under Gailey from 2010-12.
As for Smith, he finished 2014 as the Jets’ starter after being benched mid-season for Michael Vick. He threw for 2,525 yards with 13 touchdowns and 13 interceptions to go with a few public relations missteps last season.
With the sixth overall pick in the upcoming draft, the Jets could be in position to select Oregon Ducks quarterback and reigning Heisman winner Marcus Mariota. New York bolstered its passing game in a trade last week for Chicago Bears All-Pro wide receiver Brandon Marshall.
The 6-foot-6 Mallett was named Houston’s starter in November but never made it out of the month due to a season-ending pectoral injury. He threw for 400 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions last season.
Hoyer is no stranger to QB drama, beating out Johnny Manziel last summer for the starting job in Cleveland. He was benched for Manziel late in the season despite a 7-6 record in 13 starts. He had a 55.3 completion percentage in 2014, throwing for 3,326 yards, 12 touchdowns and 13 interceptions.