Debby Wong – USA TODAY Sports
Ok I get it. I’m not dumb. The writing is on the wall. The New York Jets’ fans have finally gotten their wish. Mark Sanchez is on his way out the door. Highly touted quarterback, Geno Smith, from West Virginia University – was drafted to take the reigns in the not so distant future. So Mark Sanchez, he of the infamous ‘Butt-Fumble’ and erratic decision making. He of the ‘Broadway” lifestyle, and cover boy looks – will now fade away into oblivion (maybe even “Bolivian” as Mike Tyson once so elegantly put it). Good riddance you say? Maybe you should curb your enthusiasm…..I believe it’s too soon.
There once was a QB who was selected with a high pick, who had designs on changing the misfortune of a historic franchise. After his initial two starting seasons, seasons in which he posted 17 TD’s and 16 Int’s (76.9 rating), then 11 Td’s and 15 Int’s (67.5 rating) – the club decide to use it’s #1 overall pick on another young QB. Because of a contractual dispute, the new QB didn’t get into camp on time. This allowed the QB #1 to start the season off as the starter, while the QB#2 worked his way into shape. It turned out that the franchise jumped the gun a little too fast in naming a successor for QB#1, because that QB ended up keeping the job for the next two seasons while putting up Pro Bowl numbers (27 TD’s and 7 Int’s for an 104.8 rating, and 24 TD’s and 15 int’s – for an 89.2 rating respectively). Subsequently, a shoulder injury at the end of his 4th starting season, coupled with the monetary commitment of a high salary back-up, sealed the fate of QB #1. Too bad, because this QB has set numerous NFL records, been the MVP of the Super Bowl, and will be a first ballot hall-of-famer whenever he decides to hang up his cleats….. That man is Drew Brees! The all-world QB of the New Orleans Saints, and former San Diego Charger.
Jason Parkhurst – USA TODAY Sports
Retroactively looking back, it’s easy to see why Brees took a big step-up in production when the Chargers drafted Eli Manning. It was due to the fact that the Chargers upgraded the talent around him. In 2004 in Brees’ breakout season, Antonio Gates emerged as the best pass catching tight end in the NFL. His emergence opened up the game for receivers Keenen McCardell and Eric Parker. It also allowed running back LaDainian Tomlinson to rush for a league leading 17 Td’s along with 1,335 yards. Overall the Chargers went from being 4-12 in 2003 to being 12-4 in 2004. The New York Jets could be letting their Drew Brees walk out the door in the not so distant future.
In 2009, the New York Jets traded up to the 5th slot in the draft to select Mark Sanchez, a redshirt junior of the University of Southern California. The Jets were stock-piled with both offensive and defensive talent. First year head coach Rex Ryan knew all he needed was a decent QB and his Jets could possibly be in Super Bowl contention; Ryan was a defensive savant. His scheme was full of pizzazz and he had the athletes on defense to pull it off. His offensive motto was “Ground and Pound”. He wanted to run the ball to control the clock while his defense blitzed and stifled opposing QB’s. All he needed was a QB who could make the big play when necessary and not turn the ball over. Read the rest of this entry » «Gone too soon: The Mark Sanchez story»