New York Jets offensive coordinator Chan Gailey said young quarterbacks Bryce Petty and Christian Hackenberg need to get all the reps they can get to continue to develop.
Though the Jets have decided to turn back to Ryan Fitzpatrick at quarterback for the foreseeable future, Gailey said Petty "needs all of the work he can get," according to NJ.com's Connor Hughes.
"It helps to play in games. ... The probability in games, you've got a lot better idea of what's going to happen," Gailey said. "In practice, you only have about a 75 percent probability of how they're going to be, how they're to play, and how they're going to progress."
Petty has started just one game -- a 9-6 loss to the Los Angeles Rams in Week 10 -- this season before head coach Todd Bowles opted to make Fitzpatrick, who led New York to 10 wins last season, the starter again.
"We learned some things that we felt were his strong suits, and some things that we felt like he needed to work on," Gailey said of Petty, a second-year quarterback out of Baylor who has thrown for 182 yards, one touchdown and one interception in his brief career. "Every time someone plays, you evaluate them. You learn something about them. You can go from there to try to help them get better."
While Petty, 25, has one NFL start under his belt, Hackenberg, the Jets' second-round pick, has yet to be on the active roster for a game, which makes it difficult for Gailey to evaluate.
"It almost takes a season for you to find out exactly who a guy is and what he is, and where he needs to go, especially when a guy is not playing in games," Gailey said of Hackenberg, according to ESPN's Rich Cimini. "It takes you that long to work with them and evaluate them."
Bowles said in October that Hackenberg would not play in 2016, calling this season more of a "redshirt year" for him to allow him to adjust to the NFL level.
"He's learning every day about when to throw the ball, how to throw the ball," Gailey said. "Up here it's different than it is in college. He's learning a great deal. It's hard to say specifically, but he's gotten better. To me, he's gotten better every week. He understands the game better. He understands the defenses better. He understands protections better. That's all a part of the growth process.
"I think he's a developmental player at this point. There's a lot of talent there. The sky's the limit. We don't know yet."