Asked if the rest of the locker room also hopes Sanchez will emerge as the starter, Mangold nodded ... “I believe so,” he told The Post. “I haven’t walked around with a pen and paper and taken a poll, but from the feeling I get, the locker room wants to win. Whoever gives us the best chance to do that, we want out there -- and at this point, Mark gives us that best chance.”In his chat with Bart Hubbuch of the New York Post, Mangold also discussed how Sanchez has impressed during the offseason program and how he's seen no evidence of "diva" behavior from Geno Smith (who he thinks "can be a good player" for the Jets, but is going to have to "work his butt off".)
This casts further doubt over the quotes from Mike Freeman's anonymous source last month and just how representative of the locker room consensus they were. A reminder of the quote, which "80-90%" of the team were estimated to feel the same way about:
Everyone on the team likes Mark personally but there’s a general feeling among some of the players that maybe it’s time to give someone else a chance.It's also interesting to hear Mangold say that Sanchez gives them the best chance to win - a phrase Rex Ryan was mocked for saying repeatedly last season.
There's a long way to go in this quarterback battle, which QB coach David Lee characterized as "neck and neck", but it's clear Smith has plenty of work to do to convince his teammates and coaches he's ready.