So much for the quarterback controversy developing in Florham Park with the New York Jets. On Monday it was reported that Jets quarterback Geno Smith tore his ACL during Sunday's action against Baltimore when he was tackled by Matt Judon. As a result, he will undergo season ending knee surgery to repair the ligament tear.
This is the latest, and possibly final chapter of misfortune in Smith's Jet career. From being treated like a proverbial human yo-yo under Rex Ryan in his battle with John Idzik to getting punched in the face by a teammate last August, and showing incredible immaturity both on and off the field, it is bizarre and disturbingly fitting that his time in New York could end like this.
Smith was never going to be the Jets starting quarterback again. That shipped sailed away for good when the Jets fired both Idzik and Ryan and hired Todd Bowles and Mike Maccagnan. They held on to him, albeit reluctantly, because of his contract, but he never blossomed enough to win anyone over. Hopefully, Smith can revive his career elsewhere, most likely as a back-up.
Now the Jets are back in the hands of Ryan Fitzpatrick, who professed his angst for the Jets front office, saying that he felt owner Woody Johnson, Maccagnan and Bowles stopped "believing in him."
Bowles offered the perfect retort to Fitzpatrick's comments when he told reporters: "If pissed off is going to stop the turnovers, then I'm more than happy to have him pissed off the whole time." That was perhaps the best quote Bowles has had in his short two year stay with the Jets. It is the perfect answer that basically tells Fitzpatrick to stop complaining and play like a professional.
For a quarterback who came across as the ultimate team guy, Fitzpatrick certainly has shown his true colors as a self-absorbed athlete, who thinks he's better than everyone around him.
Those hoping that this means Bryce Petty will enter the conversation should hold their horses. Beat writers for the Jets have noted that Petty does not look ready to play since he was just recently activated from the DL after a shoulder injury. He is probably a ways off before being able to truly challenge Fitzpatrick for the starting job.
Not to mention, at 2-5 the Jets still have a mathematical (although unlikely) shot at the postseason. They play in Cleveland this week, visit Miami in two weeks and face the Rams in mid-November. Those are three teams that they should beat with Fitzpatrick at quarterback. If they do, they are 5-5 going into their first match-up with the Patriots in late-November. If the team squanders this chance with Fitz under center, then obviously it is time for Petty to start.