New York Jets Head Coach Rex Ryan, 12.3

Opening Statement…

First off, I thought the game, I know it’s been described as ugly and all that stuff but any time you are one point better than the opponent or 30 points better, it’s a beautiful game.  I thought that was a beautiful game. Obviously, anytime you find a way to get a win. I thought the defense was, that’s about as good as we’ve played in a long, long time. Statistically, they had that 40-yard fake punt, I don’t know what that would’ve given them had we had prevented that, but it was really a great game on defense. The 0-15 on third down obviously was huge for us. We’ve been struggling at getting off the field on third down and we came up big.

But the play on the backend in particular, guys like Ellis Lankster and  Kyle Wilson had a big game. (Antonio) Cromartie, the type of game he had, Larry Fitzgerald’s about as good a receiver as there is in this league and he gives up one catch for 23 yards and he just continues to play at a super Pro Bowl level and, obviously, I know the voting for that but they shouldn’t even have one if that kid doesn’t get in there. Muhammad Wilkerson’s still, that’s another guy that just keeps continuing to make plays. (I’m) really happy with the defense in particular. And then on offense, two guys that don’t get a whole lot of attention I think, Jason Smith, I thought had his best game. I thought he did a tremendous job playing that big tight end for us. I thought he had a tremendous game, (and) did a great job of finishing those blocks. Then, Austin Howard, he just keeps getting better and better and I thought he had a super game. Brandon (Moore), you expect that from him as a Pro Bowl player and things but he was tremendous as well.  One other guy too, Robert Malone, I think when you look at the game that he had. You’re going against one of the premier punt returners in the game (Patrick Peterson) and our thing was look, just kick it out of bounds. Whatever you do, just kick it out of bounds. Finally Peterson got so frustrated, he fielded that ball on the two-yard line (and) made us all hold our breath.  I thought the game (Malone) had was absolutely tremendous and I think, without question, he’ll be getting the game ball for his efforts.

On who the starting quarterback will be on Sunday…

Well, I think right now, I definitely need a little more time to make that decision. I’m comfortable and confident with all three quarterbacks.  I think all three guys, well now have proven they can win in this league, with Greg (McElroy) at the end of the game and obviously, Mark’s (Sanchez) history here and the way Tim (Tebow) has played. So, I’ve got three guys I’m confident in but I’ll make that decision as the week goes on.

On whether Tebow could be the starter…

I’m just saying this, I think when you look at Tim, he is a proven winning quarterback in this league. Each game’s different, I think when you look at who you play, the opponent you’re playing and things like that, you make decisions on what gives you the best (chance to win). I make decisions on what gives us the best chance to be successful to win. And really this week, obviously, is going to be about competing and beating Jacksonville and that’s what will go into all decisions.

On whether Tebow has a chance to be the starter…

You can put him in there, you can put whoever in there. Tim, we’ll have to monitor his situation as the week goes on. He was cleared to play, but it was my decision that (he didn’t). I never felt that he could (play), I just never thought that he was where I think he should be. He might be able to play, but I don’t think he’s near 100 percent and I think I just wasn’t comfortable. Quite honestly, I let Tim talk me into activating him the week before and I think that was something I regretted and I wasn’t going to let him talk his way into it this time. That’s basically what happened.

On whether he’s not sharing his decision for competitive reasons…

Right now, I haven’t made that decision. But again, obviously, that could be a thing that I’ll consider as the week goes on. But right now, I’m not ready to say that. I want to make sure that I talk to Tony (Sparano), Matt (Cavanaugh), everybody and make sure that I get a sense of what will be the right decision. I know nothing about Jacksonville. I haven’t watched one film on Jacksonville as far as their defense is concerned. There are a lot of things that go into every decision you make, even how we’re going to play Kyle Wilson. Is Kyle going to play corner or is he going to play the nickel? Those are decisions you make based on opponent specifics.

On how he’d describe his quarterback situation…

Well, I have three good quarterbacks and I feel good about (all) three quarterbacks. I think we’re in a lot better situation than probably a lot of teams.

On what McElroy provided that in a game that was “ugly” by the media’s standards…

Beautiful by mine, clearly. I just thought at the time, it was the right move that sometimes you have better days than others and it’s just something I felt needed to be done and gave our team the best opportunity to win. That’s what it’s always about and that’s why I made that move.

On whether he has confidence in McElroy playing on the road…

I think he’s played and all these guys have played in big games. It’s not (something new). He’s not foreign to big games, he’s won a National Championship, Tim has won a National Championship, (he’s) been a quarterback, Mark’s obviously played in big games before. We’re fortunate to have guys that are tested that way.

On how he will divide practice reps for the quarterbacks…

As the week goes on and the days go on, I’ll make that decision and we’ll make that decision as a staff.

On why Coach Sparano told Sanchez that McElroy was going in…

Tony went over, I told Greg (and) I told Tony. And he just grabbed him (Sanchez) and clearly, I would’ve, but we were playing defense, right away, we were up on defense. I saw Tony had grabbed Mark (and), obviously, I was going to find my way to tell Mark myself, but I wasn’t going to go grab him and let him know. Tony already did it. So when he asked, when I stepped back, I reached over I told Greg, I told Tony, Tony went to (Sanchez) and then I saw (Sparano) with (Sanchez) and then I was over on defense. The message was clearly delivered, he (Sanchez) knew exactly where it was coming from. I made that decision. I made sure that Tony knew that that was my decision. He went and told Mark. I saw (Sparano) there. I wasn’t going to go over and pile on him. I’m trying to get focused on the defense.

On if he has made up his mind of who will be the starting quarterback…

I just want to make sure that I get all of the facts and everything else. It’s a big decision. Obviously, the decision, I think, has to be made in what gives us the best opportunity to beat Jacksonville.

On if the decision is open for discussion among the staff…

I want it to be an open discussion, so I don’t want to say there is definitely a way I am leaning. I want to make sure that everybody knows that it’s an open discussion. I want honest feedback.

On if practice has anything to do with who will be the starter…

We’ll see.

On it sounding like he has decided to make Sanchez the starter this week…

It sounds like you’ve already made your opinion. But again, I haven’t. To me, it’s a decision that you make based on the moment, on who gives you the best opportunity to win that particular game. I have more time. I will make what I think is the appropriate decision on who gives us the best opportunity to beat Jacksonville.

On if Tebow would have replaced Sanchez if he was active yesterday…

Again, I really don’t want to get into the “what ifs” and all that stuff because each situation is different. I just felt like I’ve never really pulled Mark before in a game, but I just felt that for our team, the best move was that we were going to make a change. I thought that was going to give us (the best chance of winning). Sometimes, if you step back and look at things, obviously the quarterback position is different than any other position that’s why I’m slower to make that move. I’ve benched a lot of great players as a coach, a lot of great ones, on defense in particular. I just felt like I needed to make that change.

On comparing the short and long term when making his decision…

I just have to focus on (my job). My job is to win games and I’m going to focus on what gives us the best opportunity to beat Jacksonville.

On his conversation with Sanchez in the locker room after the game…

I think anybody that goes through that, when it’s a decision that I personally made to put a guy down, I think you have a little more time to explain why (and) I thought I needed to do that, so that’s what I did. Obviously, nobody wants to be pulled from anything. Mark and everyone else I’ve ever put in a situation like that always believe that they would give us the best opportunity to win. I think that’s why they’re so competitive. That’s just the nature of the man that’s playing, so I understand that. Anyways, it was a conversation I thought I needed to have.

On if the fans will impact his decision…

There will be no impact that way.

On why he made the quarterback change…

I just thought at that particular time, in that game, that I needed to make a change. I just felt it. We were fortunate that we ended up finding a way to win the game, but that was the reason.

On if he would have felt comfortable replacing Sanchez if Tebow was active…

Again, I don’t want to get into the what-if’s and all that stuff. The fact is that Greg was the guy that was active. I thought the decision was in the best interest (of) the team. That’s why I made that decision.

On if yesterday was the final “wake-up call” for Sanchez…

Mark Sanchez (has) won a lot of football games for this franchise, has won some big games for us, has produced a lot of big wins for us and has been a good player for us. ‘Final wake-up call?’ I don’t know about that.

On making a run at the playoffs…

It’s just about finding a way to beat Jacksonville. That’s where it is. We’re a sub-.500 team, so we’re just trying to scratch and claw our way back into it. Obviously, you want to be playing at the end of the year for an opportunity to get in (the playoffs). It’s hard to get in the playoffs, but you want to fight like crazy to get in there if you can.

On making tough decisions as a coach…

There are a lot of decisions you make as a coach that are tough decisions. A lot of times, they’re easy decisions if you always put the three priorities first: the team, the team and the team. When you do that, the decision is sometimes easier. But as a head coach, there are a lot of tough decisions. You have to take personal feelings outside of it because it’s bigger than just me, this person or that person.

On McElroy…

I think with Greg, you see every day the improvements that he makes, albeit running the scout team. This is a smart guy. He grew up under Nick Saban, who’s a great coach, obviously. He’s had a lot of advantages even going (back) to his high school (Southlake Carroll) in Texas. You talk about big games, the National Championship Game probably pales in comparison to the State Championship Game he quarterbacked in. He’s grown up that way. I’m sure he’s comfortable with any situation he’s in.

On Dustin Keller and Joe McKnight’s injuries…

Dustin’s (injury) doesn’t look like a high ankle sprain, (so) that’s good. We’ll know about him later. He has some swelling there. Joe McKnight’s ribs (tested) negative as far as (being) broken, so that’s good. We’ll know more about the other guys as the week goes on.

On Bilal Powell getting the early carries instead of Greene…

Both guys got a lot of carries. I think (Shonn) might have had (24) attempts, so that was just something we decided to do.

On if he will consult other NFL coaches he trusts about making the quarterback decision…

It’s certainly a possibility, but I think I’ll just lean on the guys in here. The decision will be made based on our situation, our football team and what ultimately I feel will give us the best chance to win.

On if he will decided the starting quarterback by Tuesday night…

I’m not going to get into it 100 percent, but that would be my initial thought.

New York QB Greg McElroy, 12.3

On what the day after the game feels like…

Just a normal Monday, honestly. Woke up, got a great breakfast here at the facility, got a work out in, now I’m just watching the film of the game. Just a standard Monday, wouldn’t have it any other way.

On what he saw on film…

Well, actually I’ve watched it briefly, I just (watched it quickly), but I was about to break it down and take notes on it.  Obviously, (I have) a lot of stuff to learn.  But it was a good experience for me and I was actually happy with the way things looked at first glance.

On if there’s any indication to whether he’ll start on Sunday…

No, no indication. (There’s) no information at this point obviously. That’s going to come, I assume, in the next few days. I know Coach Ryan and Coach Sparano and everybody involved, they’re going to make the decision that’s best for the team. I think we all feel comfortable with their decision and we all are looking forward to what the decision may be.

On whether they have a quarterback meeting today…

No, it’s a victory Monday so it’s basically an off day. It’s one of those things that’s voluntary but you can’t go a day without coming up to this place. For some reason, I have a hard time getting away from the facility. So I had to be here, I saw Tim (Tebow and) I saw Mark (Sanchez) and I think most of the guys on the team will be around the facility at some point today.

On whether Coach Cavanaugh or Coach Ryan has said they’ll have a decision by Wednesday…

No, I haven’t really visited with those guys. It’s just one thing that I’m sure they’ll let us know and it will obviously be in the best interest of the football team.

On how it’s been talking to Tebow and Sanchez not knowing who will be starting on Sunday…

It’s not worth worrying about. It doesn’t change our relationship (and) it doesn’t change how supportive we are of one another. Whoever’s on the field, I know the other two guys will be pushing for that person and supporting him every step of the way and that’s been the case up to this point and I wouldn’t expect that to change.

On Brandon Moore’s comments that he was borderline cocky in the huddle…

(Laughing) I don’t know. That thing, confident, bordering on cocky, I would like to think its leaning a little bit more towards confident. (Laughter) But yeah, one thing I’ve always tried to approach this game with is you just never let them see you sweat. And that includes the players in your huddle, the players in the opposite huddle, the players on the opposite sideline, on your sideline, never let them see you sweat. Regardless of the situation, always stay with an even keel, always have a positive mindset and good things will happen and that’s been the case up to this point.

On whether anyone reached out and congratulated him…

One or two. One or two hundred that is. (laughing) A lot of people are very, very supportive and people that have just always been in my corner and I have a tremendous support group and I am very, very thankful and grateful for those people. A lot of people were able to reach out and tell me congrats and tell me that they were happy for me and it was really great. It was an experience I really appreciate. A lot of people were able to reach out and (get in) touch (with) me and all those things, I appreciated that.

On what it’s like going from a third-string quarterback to possibly the starter…

It doesn’t change any approach at all obviously. (When) you love this game, (when) you play this game a long time, you’re always going to approach it the same way.  Whether I was in high school as a backup, whether in college you’re a backup or a starter, and especially at this level, you just approach it the same it doesn’t change anything. Whether you’re a third-string quarterback, second-string quarterback, starter, you always have to prepare the same because you never know when your opportunity’s going to come.  I think you have to take every opportunity that you possibly have and you try to make the most of it and when that opportunity’s there you better be prepared because you don’t know when you’re going to get another one.

On whether he had damage control after his comments at the end of last season…

I reached out to a lot of players as soon as everything happened and just apologized. (I reached out to) a lot of the veteran guys and just apologized and just tried to explain what the situation was and how things happened. A lot of guys were upset and rightfully so. I completely understand that and that’s one thing I did have to own up to it and I had to do a little bit of damage control for sure. Those guys are understanding and Rex (Coach Ryan) made a point that, “Hey, last season’s in the past and rip off the rear view mirror and let’s go forward.”  To everyone it really wasn’t an issue at that point. Just don’t worry about it, don’t do it again. I think Wayne Hunter actually said it best, “Rookie mistake, don’t do it again.” I think that was the best advice. That’s the way a lot of them handled it.

On whether he thought he was going to get cut after his comments at the end of last season...

You don’t worry about those situations. That’s kind of a hypothetical so it’s not something that I worry about. Obviously, it’s always a possibility it doesn’t matter what the situation is. We play a game for a living and it’s not the most stable career, I’ll be honest. But at any point you don’t know when your number might be called so it’s always a possibility but I wouldn’t say that that one particular incident really changed my view on that. You always have to be on edge and you always have to be prepared for a possible situation like that.

On whether he breaks down film with Tebow and Sanchez…

Every game (gets broken down), regardless of who’s on the field. I always come in and I watch it and I grade it. It’s just a plus-minus (grade). I usually do a footwork grade, I do a passing grade, and a running grade and a position grade. So, just pluses and minuses across the board. I’ve done that because I chart the plays, as of when I was on the sideline in the past 11 games, I was always charting the plays and writing down what the coverage was. I’d go back and grade Mark and I’d grade myself on how I did with the coverages. I think I’m a little bit obsessive compulsive when it comes to the grading. It’s something I love. I love this game and I love studying it and its part of the reason why I just have a tremendous passion for this game.

On the case for him to be the starter…

You don’t need to make a case, obviously. There’s no case being made obviously. Coach Ryan will make a decision and he’ll do what’s best for this football team. He’s a tremendous coach, he has a tremendous vision and he knows exactly what he wants to accomplish. Coach Ryan is the man to make that decision, so there’s no case needed to be made for (any) of us. It’s just going to be Rex’s decision and we’ll deal with it when he decides.

New York Jets DE Mike DeVito, 12.3

On who should play quarterback on Sunday…

That decision is above my pay grade. I couldn’t even tell you. I trust all three of those guys. I’m grateful that we have all three of those guys on our team and I know the coaches will make a really informed and smart decision for the benefit of the team. I trust in that and all I can do is worry about what I’m doing on defense.

On if the situation at quarterback could divide the locker room…

I think in most locker rooms it could do that, but not in this locker room. We put a real (emphasis) this offseason on building a really tight-knit group, a team that cares about each other (and) a team that really bonds together as a family. We’ll face this just like every other situation, as a family. It definitely won’t divide this group of guys. Last year, I might have had a different answer for you, but this year I have no doubt that this team is going to stick together.

On Greg McElroy…

(He is) just a really smart quarterback. He’s not always put in the most favorable positions running (the) scout team, but just his ability to set the right protections and find the open man against our defense, we see it week-in-and-week-out. He’s a special quarterback and a guy that can get the job done. He faces one of the most complex defenses in the NFL each week, so he knows how to play NFL football.

On the strong defensive performance…

It was so needed. We really needed that. That’s the defense that we’ve seen all (of) training camp (and) that we’ve seen off and on all season. It’s the defense that we know we have on this team. It was great to see it manifest itself on Sunday to the full extent and to play that way across the board was just awesome. We needed that going into this last quarter of the season.

On if the defense can move up in the statistical rankings even more…

That’s what I was saying last week too, ‘Let’s wait until the end of the season before we start deciding where we’re at. Let’s wait until the end of the year, and then we’ll look back and see how we played.’ It’s right there in front of us. We know we can play that way week-in-and-week-out. Let’s continue this upward trend and continue to play Jets defense.

On stopping teams from scoring…

As far as we think in that room, we know that we recognize, when any team scores, they can win, and if they don’t score, they can’t win, and that’s on us. We can’t really be concerned about the other side of the ball and what’s going on. We trust everybody in that locker room. We trust the coaches. We trust the guy’s playing. We know everybody out there is doing their job. That’s all we can focus on. Again, it’s in our hands. If the other team doesn’t score, they can’t win.

Tags: Transcript, Brian Bassett

 (Brian Losness)
(Brian Losness)

In Bleacher Report's latest mock draft, the Jets select Wyoming QB Josh Allen with the sixth overall pick. 

Standing at 6-foot-5, 233 pounds, Allen's arm strength backs up his height and weight. He is also good with his feet as his stature doesn't hinder his mobility. 

Josh McCown may have had a career year with the Jets, but he isn't the long term solution, and neither is Bryce PettyChristian Hackenberg hasn't gotten a shot yet, but the Jets clearly don't see him as NFL ready. Allen could jump into the quarterback race this offseason, and come out on top ready for Week 1. 

Tags: Bryce Petty, Christian Hackenberg, Josh McCown
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 (Mark J. Rebilas)
(Mark J. Rebilas)

This Friday marked the 50th anniversary of the Jets' Super Bowl II victory over the Balitmore Colts, 16-7, in Miami. 

That championship still stands as the franchise's only Super Bowl win, and the last time the team has made it to the title game. 

"Broadway" Joe Namath led the Jets in the Orange Bowl, and helped New York become the first AFL team to win the Super Bowl. 

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Daily News Live: ASJ on season 00:06:46
Jonas Schwartz sits down with Jets tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins to discuss his thoughts on this past season and look ahead to 2018.

The Jets and tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins will continue contract negotiations after the 25-year-old tight end reportedly rejected a two-year, $8 million deal, according to Newsday's Calvin Watkins.

Seferian-Jenkins said he hopes he and New York could reach a deal before he hits free agency and would "absolutely" want to return.

Tags: Austin Seferian-Jenkins
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Washington Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) throws the ball as New York Giants defensive tackle Jay Bromley (96) chases in the fourth quarter at FedEx Field. (Geoff Burke)
Washington Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) throws the ball as New York Giants defensive tackle Jay Bromley (96) chases in the fourth quarter at FedEx Field. (Geoff Burke)

The Jets will reportedly be interested in quarterback Kirk Cousins when free agency begins in March, according to Newsday's Calvin Watkins.

Cousins, 29, is expected to be a hot commodity in the offseason assuming the Washington Redskins don't franchise tag him for a third straight year. 

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Aug 31, 2017; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Bears running back Jeremy Langford (33) runs with the ball during the first half of a game against the Cleveland Browns at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports (Kamil Krzaczynski)
Aug 31, 2017; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Bears running back Jeremy Langford (33) runs with the ball during the first half of a game against the Cleveland Browns at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports (Kamil Krzaczynski)

The Jets signed RB Jeremy Langford to a reserve/future contract, the club announced Wednesday.

Langford, 26, was the Bears' fourth-round pick in the 2015 NFL Draft out of Michigan State University. He appeared in 28 games -- five starts -- in his two seasons with Chicago, rushing for 737 yards and 10 touchdowns. 

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 (Jay Biggerstaff)
(Jay Biggerstaff)

Last week, we discussed the possibility of the Jets targeting Kirk Cousins if he hits the open market.

However, the various pros and cons connected with such a move would become moot if Cousins doesn't hit the open market. A less-attractive alternative more likely to be available is Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith. Could he be someone the Jets are monitoring?

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New York Jets' offensive coordinator John Morton talks to his team during the team's organized team activities at its NFL football training facility, Tuesday, May 23, 2017, in Florham Park, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) (Julio Cortez/AP)
New York Jets' offensive coordinator John Morton talks to his team during the team's organized team activities at its NFL football training facility, Tuesday, May 23, 2017, in Florham Park, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) (Julio Cortez/AP)

Jets offensive coordinator John Morton will remain with the team amid speculation that he was being considered for the Raiders' offensive coordinator job. 

 

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Rashard Robinson (Geoff Burke)
Rashard Robinson (Geoff Burke)

Jets CB Rashard Robinson was arrested in December after police found him in possession of edible marijuana, according to the Associated Press.

 

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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

With the offseason ahead, one position on which some people may be divided is the Jets' receiving corps. Do the Jets need to upgrade, merely add some depth or are they essentially set at the position?

During the offseason last year, the Jets' receiving corps was ranked as the worst in the NFL - and this was before Eric Decker was released and Quincy Enunwa and Quinton Patton suffered season-ending injuries.

However, once the season got underway, the Jets fared better than expected in the passing game, making it difficult to know how they'll approach this position with so many other needs.

Tags: ArDarius Stewart, Brandon Marshall, Chad Hansen, Eric Decker, Quincy Enunwa, Robby Anderson
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Daily News Live: ASJ on season 00:06:46
Jonas Schwartz sits down with Jets tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins to discuss his thoughts on this past season and look ahead to 2018.

Jets TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins had his career revitalized this season, which is why he wants to stay with the team that gave him his second chance. 

The Jets took a shot on Seferian-Jenkins, who was caught up in off-the-field drama before he joined the team. He repayed them with his best year in the NFL, and he wants to continue being an asset in their offensive scheme. He is currently a restricted free agent with the Jets being the only team allowed to negotiate his terms. 

Seferian-Jenkins is hoping he gets a deal done with the Jets, and doesn't have to start contacting other teams.

Tags: Austin Seferian-Jenkins
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 (Ron Chenoy)
(Ron Chenoy)

In The Post's latest mock draft, the Jets select Wyoming's Josh Allen with the No. 6 overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft. 

The Jets have yet to see Christian Hackenberg on the field, and Bryce Petty wasn't the answer after Josh McCown went down with a season-ending injury. In turn, the Jets take Allen -- a 6-foot-5, 233 pounder who can let it fly. For his size, Allen is extremely mobile as well.

Allen didn't have the best of seasons with the Cowboys as he battled injuries. He finished with just 1,812 yards, a 56.3 completion percentage, 16 touchdowns and six interceptions. But in his sophomore season, Allen totaled 3,203 yards, 28 touchdowns and 15 interceptions. 

Allen would be another quarterback to add to the Jets' competition this offseason. The Jets have not made it clear whether or not McCown will return for another season in Green and White, which is why Allen enters the mix to vie for the starting role. 

Tags: Bryce Petty, Christian Hackenberg, Josh McCown
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Jonas Schwartz and Willie Colon are back for the final episode of the season as the guys welcome WFAN radio personality and huge Jets fan Joe Benigno to the show for his take on the 2017 Jets. It gets heated as Colon and Benigno debate the warrants of Todd Bowles' coaching ability, and if he deserved to be retained after another losing season.

Click below to listen

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Nov 29, 2015; Landover, MD, USA; Washington Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) looks over the line of scrimmage against the New York Giants during the second half at FedEx Field. The Redskins won 20-14. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Mills)
Nov 29, 2015; Landover, MD, USA; Washington Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) looks over the line of scrimmage against the New York Giants during the second half at FedEx Field. The Redskins won 20-14. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Mills)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter: Plenty of attention this year has been on the Jets positioning themselves to potentially select their quarterback of the future in the draft. With the sixth pick in hand and the consensus top five QB prospects all having thrown their name into the hat for April's draft, they seem to be well-placed to make this happen. However, could another viable option soon become available?

It's rare for a top quarterback to hit the open market, but it's not impossible that it could happen with Kirk Cousins. Washington currently controls his rights, but they'll have to decide whether to franchise him again, sign him to a long-term deal or let him hit the open market.

While the latter of those options might seem the least likely for a player who was third in the league in passing yards in 2016, his numbers regressed this year and the team ended up with a losing record. So far, in three years as a full-time starter, Cousins has started just one postseason game -- a 17-point loss to the Packers 12 months ago...

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New York Jets quarterback Bryce Petty prepares to take the snap against the Los Angeles Chargers during an NFL football game at MetLife Stadium. (Kirby Lee/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets quarterback Bryce Petty prepares to take the snap against the Los Angeles Chargers during an NFL football game at MetLife Stadium. (Kirby Lee/USA TODAY Sports)

Jets quarterback Bryce Petty said he hopes he returns to New York during the offseason despite the odds he wouldn't be the starting quarterback in 2018.

"I try not to put too much thought into things that I can't control," Petty said, according to the New York Daily News' Daniel Popper. "Hopefully it's here. I want to be here. But if it's not, that's okay too. It's a business. Everybody understands that."

Petty, who went 0-3 in the final three games of the season as Josh McCown's replacement, will be entering the final year of his four-year rookie deal and would have a cap hit of $843,425 next season. 

Tags: Bryce Petty, Christian Hackenberg, Josh McCown
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Nov 20, 2016; Santa Clara, CA, USA; New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick on the sideline during the fourth quarter against the San Francisco 49ers at Levi's Stadium. The New England Patriots defeated the San Francisco 49ers 30-17. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports (Kelley L Cox)
Nov 20, 2016; Santa Clara, CA, USA; New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick on the sideline during the fourth quarter against the San Francisco 49ers at Levi's Stadium. The New England Patriots defeated the San Francisco 49ers 30-17. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports (Kelley L Cox)

Eighteen years ago today, January 4, Bill Belichick resigned from his one day stint as head coach of the Jets. Before January closed that year, Belichick took the head coaching job with the Patriots. There still has been no resignation, nor firing, from that job. 

Belichick and the Patriots have been the NFL's pillar of excellence in his tenure in New England. Belichick and Tom Brady, taken in Belichick's first draft a few months later, have won five Super Bowls together and appeared in seven. 

The Jets, meanwhile, have two AFC Championship appearances to point to in that time span. 

Oh, what could have been. 

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Sep 23, 2017; Tallahassee, FL, USA; Florida State Seminoles cornerback Derwin James (3) reacts during the second half against North Carolina State Wolfpack at Doak Campbell Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Melina Vastola-USA TODAY Sports (Melina Vastola)
Sep 23, 2017; Tallahassee, FL, USA; Florida State Seminoles cornerback Derwin James (3) reacts during the second half against North Carolina State Wolfpack at Doak Campbell Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Melina Vastola-USA TODAY Sports (Melina Vastola)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

Now that the season is over, the Jets find themselves in a familiar spot with the opportunity to add a difference-maker in the draft. With the standings finalized, the Jets now know that they'll be picking sixth for the third time in the last four years as general manager Mike Maccagnan has been presented with a golden opportunity to find some cornerstone pieces to build a young nucleus.

Priority number one remains the same: The team must find a franchise quarterback. This year's class initially looked like a strong one with USC's Sam Darnold, UCLA's Josh Rosen and Josh Allen of Wyoming headlining the class. Over the course of the season, though, apparent weaknesses for each of the top three prospects' were laid bare. 

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GEICO SportsNite: Mike Maccagnan 00:02:01
SNY's Jeane Coakley catches up with Jets GM Mike Maccagnan to discuss how he intends to approach free agency in the offseason.

Nov 18, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Southern California Trojans quarterback Sam Darnold (right) and UCLA Bruins quarterback Josh Rosen (3) shake hands after their game at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports (Kelvin Kuo)
Nov 18, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Southern California Trojans quarterback Sam Darnold (right) and UCLA Bruins quarterback Josh Rosen (3) shake hands after their game at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports (Kelvin Kuo)

Quarterbacks Josh Rosen of UCLA and Sam Darnold of USC declared themselves eligible for the 2018 NFL Draft on Wednesday.

The duo are considered the two best collegiate QBs in the draft and are expected to be the first two quarterbacks taken, perhaps with the top two picks by the Cleveland Browns and Giants, who draft 1-2.

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Nov 2, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets general manager Mike Maccagnan on the sidelines before a game against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Nov 2, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets general manager Mike Maccagnan on the sidelines before a game against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Although the NFL Draft is still more than three months away, Jets GM Mike Maccagnan has already begun contemplating what he'll do on April 26 at AT&T Stadium in Dallas, Texas. That may include moving up from the Jets' current spot of No. 6 overall.

"Yeah, I would say it would actually pertain to any player you felt extremely strong about, too," Maccagnan said on ESPN Radio Wednesday. "But we've moved back a little bit in the draft and there have been situations I've tried to move up in the draft. But I would say the simple answer to that question is 'yes' and if that was a player we felt very strongly about, we would have no qualms about potentially trying to go and get him."

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New York Jets quarterback Christian Hackenberg (5) looks to pass during the first half of a preseason NFL football game against the New York Giants Saturday, Aug. 26, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) (Julio Cortez/AP)
New York Jets quarterback Christian Hackenberg (5) looks to pass during the first half of a preseason NFL football game against the New York Giants Saturday, Aug. 26, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) (Julio Cortez/AP)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

The end-of-season press conferences earlier this week predictably contained a lot of platitudes about Christian Hackenberg. A common refrain was that the book on Hackenberg is not closed and that the team still considers him to have shown improvement toward realizing his potential.

There is understandable skepticism as to whether the Jets still believe Hackenberg has a future, with some believing the team is reluctant to admit they made a mistake when they drafted the 22-year old with the 50th overall pick two years ago. Jets fans are even more skeptical, with Hackenberg seen as an object of ridicule in some circles...

Tags: Bryce Petty, Christian Hackenberg, Josh McCown
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GEICO SportsNite: Jets 00:02:13
Jeane Coakley chats with Jets owner Christopher Johnson, who discusses how pleased he was with the team during his first season as owner.

Jets owner Christopher Johnson, who is running the team while his brother, Woody, is serving as the United States Ambassador to the United Kingdom, spoke with SNY on Tuesday about his first year at the helm. 

"This is -- and I didn't realize this going in -- this is the best job in the world," Johnson said. "It's be the most extraordinary stretch of my life."

Johnson said it was his decision alone to extend the contracts of head coach Todd Bowles and GM Mike Maccagnan, who are now under contract through 2020.

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 (Tommy Gilligan)
(Tommy Gilligan)

The Jets will select SMU WR Courtland Sutton with the No. 6 pick in the upcoming NFL Draft, predicts the Sporting News in their first Mock Draft of 2018.

The Mock, by Eric Galko, has the Broncos selecting Washington DT Vita Vea with the No. 5 pick, and the Bucs taking NC State DE Bradley Chubb with the No. 7 pick.

"The Jets are in play for Baker Mayfield and are one of the teams that could covet Lamar Jackson early in the draft," Galko writes. "But outside of quarterback, they need to upgrade at receiver. Adding Sutton to pair with Robby Anderson should make for an easier job for Josh McCown and/or their quarterback of the future."

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What is the Jets' future? 00:05:55
The DNL panel discusses how Todd Bowles and Mike Maccagnan will move toward their ideal vision for the Jets after a surprising 2017.

Jets owner Christopher Johnson said the progress he saw from the team this season played a part in offering two-year extensions to head coach Todd Bowles and GM Mike Maccagnan.

Johnson added that the decision to extend Bowles -- which he made earlier this season -- and Maccagnan was his, and that he didn't run it by his brother, Woody. 

"I did see progress," Johnson said. "I was more than happy to extend both Mike and Todd. ...I like the idea of some stability and going from year to year doesn't seem right."

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Maccagnan on Hack and cap 00:01:32
New York Jets GM Mike Maccagnan talks about the future of QB Christian Hackenberg and the team's plans for NFL free agency.

Jets GM Mike Maccagnan said on Tuesday that he's "excited" about the amount of salary cap space the team has to spend this offseason, suggesting they plan to be very active.

The Jets went 5-11 this year for a second-straight season, but Maccagnan and head coach Todd Bowles -- who have been overseeing the rebuild -- were rewarded with two-year contract extensions that run through 2020.

However, Maccagnan is not yet setting high expectations for 2018.

Tags: Christian Hackenberg
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Jan 1, 2018; Pasadena, CA, USA; Oklahoma Sooners quarterback Baker Mayfield (6) passes against the Georgia Bulldogs in the first quarter in the 2018 Rose Bowl college football playoff semifinal game at Rose Bowl Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports (Kirby Lee)
Jan 1, 2018; Pasadena, CA, USA; Oklahoma Sooners quarterback Baker Mayfield (6) passes against the Georgia Bulldogs in the first quarter in the 2018 Rose Bowl college football playoff semifinal game at Rose Bowl Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports (Kirby Lee)

The Jets, who finished the season 5-11, will have the No. 6 pick in the upcoming NFL Draft, which begins on April 28 at  AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.

New York is slated to pick after the Broncos and before the Buccaneers.

The Draft is expected to be quarterback-rich, with Sam Darnold (USC), Josh Rosen (UCLA), Josh Allen (Wyoming), and Baker Mayfield (Oklahoma) among the players who could be available.

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New York Jets head coach Todd Bowles talks to reporters after an NFL football game against the Carolina Panthers, Sunday, Nov. 26, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. The Panthers won 35-27. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun) (Bill Kostroun/AP)
New York Jets head coach Todd Bowles talks to reporters after an NFL football game against the Carolina Panthers, Sunday, Nov. 26, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. The Panthers won 35-27. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun) (Bill Kostroun/AP)

Jets head coach Todd Bowles addressed his team for the final time this season on Monday, and his message was simple: No excuses. 

"It's just a no-excuse business," Bowles told The Post's Brian Costello. "You win games or you don't. It's not 5-11, but you played a couple of games close. It's not so-and-so got hurt or so-and-so wasn't here. You win in spite of, and that's the only thing I was trying to convey going into the offseason."

The Jets exceeded expectations this year, as many wrote them off to do what the Browns did this season and go 0-16. However, 5-11 was the Jets' actual record, and though it appeared the players liked that outcome, WR Jermaine Kearse says that's not the case. 

Tags: Kelvin Beachum
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 (Brian Fluharty)
(Brian Fluharty)

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The Patriots predictably disposed of the Jets effortlessly in the season finale, winning 26-6. From the Jets' perspective, the game was fairly meaningless, and they used it to get another look at some of the players whose future roles with the team are uncertain.

Let's break down the offensive performance from Sunday's game...

Tags: ArDarius Stewart, Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Ben Ijalana, Bilal Powell, Brandon Shell, Brent Qvale, Brian Winters, Chad Hansen, Christian Hackenberg, Dakota Dozier, Elijah McGuire, James Carpenter, Kelvin Beachum, Matt Forte, Robby Anderson, Wesley Johnson
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GEICO SportsNite: Jets 00:02:13
After finishing the season 5-11, the Jets look forward to improving over the offseason and searching for a franchise quarterback.

The Jets finished the 2017 season with a 5-11 record after Sunday's loss to the Patriots. Here's what's going on Tuesday:

Need to know

The Jets cleaned out their lockers yesterday and will now embark upon the first stages of their offseason plan. 

Tags: Bryce Petty, Christian Hackenberg, Josh McCown
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New York Jets quarterback Josh McCown drops back to pass in the second quarter against the New York Jets at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. (Isaiah J. Downing/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets quarterback Josh McCown drops back to pass in the second quarter against the New York Jets at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. (Isaiah J. Downing/USA TODAY Sports)

Jets head coach Todd Bowles said the team would be interested in bringing back veteran quarterback Josh McCown for the 2018 season, he told ESPN's Rich Cimini.

"Josh had a great year," Bowles said. "It would be great to have him back. It's business in this league. He has decisions to make, we have decisions to make. Hopefully, they can meet and we'll go from there." 

The 38-year-old McCown went 5-8 in 13 games as the Jets' starting quarterback before he suffered a season-ending hand injury in Week 14 against the Denver Broncos.

Tags: Bryce Petty, Christian Hackenberg, Josh McCown
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New York Jets' offensive coordinator John Morton talks to his team during the team's organized team activities at its NFL football training facility, Tuesday, May 23, 2017, in Florham Park, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) (Julio Cortez/AP)
New York Jets' offensive coordinator John Morton talks to his team during the team's organized team activities at its NFL football training facility, Tuesday, May 23, 2017, in Florham Park, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) (Julio Cortez/AP)

The Oakland Raiders could pursue current Jets offensive coordinator John Morton for the same position if they hire Jon Gruden as their head coach, according to the New York Daily News' Manish Mehta.

The Raiders are expected to go after Gruden after they fired Jack Del Rio following a 6-10 season, and he is expected to try to lure Morton, who joined the Jets for the 2017 season, to Oakland.

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