Innovative, sharp, forward thinking, these are not the words we usually associate with the New York Jets. For the last three seasons New York has been led by a bombastic coach who has guaranteed a Super Bowl victory every year, only to come up snake-eyes on all three. He proclaimed that he didn't come to New York to kiss Bill Belichick's rings, which is great; yet backing into the playoffs twice doesn't really count as proof of superiority. The Jets and Rex Ryan are the self-proclaimed bad boys of the NFL, yet at this point the they more resemble the guy at the bar that talks a big game but ends up going home with swollen lip and a black eye.
Still, I have to tip my hat to Mike Tannebaum and the Jets front office for just what they are attempting to do this season. By all accounts, a two-quarterback system has never worked in the NFL. The Wildcat had it's time in the sun, yet a defensive wrinkle here and there sent that fad out the window quicker than the high top fade. Yet two-quarterback system is just what the Jets are attempting to employ, with one running the version of the spread-option.
Tannenbaum and the Jets quite possibly have a sinking sensation that Mark Sanchez might not be the quarterback he was drafted to be. Perhaps Shonn Greene is a better change of pace back than a lead back, and perhaps Santonio Holmes is more of headache than the endless Dwight Howard saga. So, if the mountain won’t come to Mohammed, bring Mohammed to the mountain.
On a team with more spectacles than Barnum and Baileys, Tannenbaum say fit to head into the market and acquire the most popular backup quarterback in the NFL. But boy people love them some Tebow, and why not? He's polarizing, seems to be well-intentioned, and by all accounts is a genuinely good guy. The problem that the Tebow fans will have to capitulate to at some point is that he can't throw the ball ten yards downfield outside the seams without killing a small family of worms in front of his intended receiver's route.
Still, what makes this move interesting is that in very un-Jets fashion, this plan appears to be well thought out. During the draft the Jets made two very intriguing selections: wide receiver Stephen Hill (43rd overall from Georgia Tech) and Terrance Ganaway (202nd overall from Baylor). Two somewhat unassuming picks, but both players come from programs in college that run a similar version of the spread-option offense. Now add Tim Tebow running said offense and now you have a small option package that new offensive coordinator Tony Sparano (who dawned the Wildcat on the NFL) can deploy in the red zone or in third-and-short situations. No massive tinkering with the offense as a whole, yet at it’s crux an entirely different personnel group to give defenses something else to consider when working up their scheme.
Let's be crystal clear. Tannenbaum's experiment isn't going to be comparable to the one that that took place in Oakland in 2002, or R.C. Buford's construction of the Spurs. However, call me sentimental, but I always seem to have soft spot for general managers who try to displace perceived truths with different and inventive approaches about constructing their teams. Conventional wisdom states that "the option" — which in New York simply means a two-quarterback system — has essentially failed at every opportunity, yet could it work for the Jets?
Mark Sanchez is still a young and developing quarterback who will most certainly lose snaps in practice (and on game day), which will most likely stunt his growth as the franchise quarterback the Jets are hoping he becomes. And of course, he'll also have to deal with a New York fan base who won't be shy at all about throwing him in front of the 6 train in favor of the more sensationalistic Tebow, if Sanchez even appears to struggle. It's an Amaranth gamble that has more famine than feast potential. Yet the Jets are looking up in the AFC East at the Patriots and right now, the way things are shaking out, the Bills. If there was ever a time to get cheeky, this would be it.
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Michael T Carr May 16th
Another good article, Craig Lowell.
Charlie Lobosco May 1st
This is a very compelling story because Mr. Collins is a very passionate, tough, intelligent, athelete taking on some additional responsibliity to help others as…
Scott Cohen May 1st
Charlie.. very well said.. he does have guts
Scott Cohen May 1st
but it shouldn’t require guts. .like you said it’s nobody’s business but his own
Hisham Zameeth April 30th
best player ever…..
Kareem Musa Mayowa April 29th
We don’t need to be hopeless about the situation bryant his. Because even david villa situation also up to the level of his own to…
Maritess Lim April 28th
I still believe in KOBE’s power…… He is still the best…… He will make it possible no matter what……
mimi_aragon84 April 28th
I feel no pity for him. First of all, it is EAGLE, COLORADO, not Eagleton, secondly he enjoyed success and adulation from fans from 2003…
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