Tha Sports Junkies 101

Jets Resign Fitzpatrick To A One Year Pact

Richie via


Brandon Marshall has gotten his wish after all. Sources tell ESPN‘s Adam Schefter that Ryan Fitzpatrick has decided to resign with the New York Jets after months of speculation from various outlets that he was on the fence.

Fitzpatrick has reportedly agreed to a 1-year, $12 million dollar contract that is completely guaranteed. Schefter also mentioned that there will be at least $3 million dollars in on-field incentives to bring the deal to a possible $15 million dollars. Fitzpatrick passed for nearly 4,000 yards last season well also putting up 31 touchdowns to 15 interceptions.

Fitzpatrick was a necessity for the Jets this year as they gear up to try to dethrone the Patriots with Tom Brady sidelined the first four weeks. Having a steady, veteran guy that everyone trusts on a team built like the Jets there is always a postseason run in the cards.

Their defense is solid enough to make offenses uncomfortable and with Fitzpatrick leading an above average offense with plenty of weapons, who knows what can happen.

However, this signing leaves a lot of questions heading into camp for the Jets at the backup Quarterback position. They now have Fitzpatrick, Geno Smith, Bryce Petty, and Christian Hackenberg all in one camp. With three young QB’s all with possible starting potential fighting it out for 2nd and 3rd string behind Fitzpatrick it should cause for some great competition and make the cream rise to the top.

Geno Smith seems to be the odd man out every year. After being drafted in the second round to New York in 2013, he has had numerous strange things derail his progress. He was hand picked to be a star, but often was underwhelming and turnover prone.

In only two years as a starter he has compiled a less than impressive 34 INTs and 8 fumbles. It seemed last year he was going to have a great shot at showing his worth with a new coach in Todd Bowles before a punch from then teammate, IK Enemkpali. This all but ended his season due to jaw surgery and led to the pick up of the aforementioned Fitzpatrick.

In the 2015 draft before Smith was taken out with friendly fire, the Jets drafted Bryce Petty out of Baylor to be Smith‘s backup. Petty was a player who put up huge numbers in college out of the spread offense, but was seen as a project to most teams because he had barely taken snaps out of any formation but shotgun. When Smith went down it was obvious they weren’t comfortable putting him out. He is already the same age as Geno Smith and still much too underdeveloped to even be a 2nd string QB in the league.

Fast forward a year later to the 2016 draft, New York had no choice but to take a risk on a QB. Fitzpatrick had been holding them up for too long and they had to made a move to cover their backs if Geno struggled once again.

Enter Christian Hackenberg. Hackenberg is one of the most interesting guys I’ve ever studied. I remember the hype when he was in high school and I certainly remember the way he slung the ball around the field against my Badgers his Freshman year at Penn State.

He earned Freshman of the Year honors in the Big Ten and it was all looking up.That was until head coach Bill O’Brien left for the NFL and new head coach James Franklin came in and immediately struggled to connect.

His Sophomore and Junior years were a struggle due to a team partially destroyed and depleted by the Jerry Sandusky scandal. He had to play behind a line not prepared to compete at the level of Big Ten football and he was constantly on the run. If Bill O’Brien would’ve stayed, I’m confident Hackenberg would’ve been a Top 10 pick.

The Jets drafted Hackenberg in preparation for the possibility of Fitzpatrick leaving, but it may turn out to be a franchise changing moving. I have seen enough of Hackenberg to know he has something. The way he throws the ball and thinks about the game has starting QB written all over it. Bryce Petty is clearly the 4th ranked guy in this group, but I wouldn’t doubt the Jets dumping Geno somewhere and hoping to get some assets in return.

The future of the QB position in New York should be Hackenberg. At the age of only 21 and with the setbacks at Penn State, it may take a year or two, but he is the guy. Fitzpatrick is a perfect guy for him to learn under and to sponge knowledge from. Jets camp used to always be entertaining because of Rex Ryan, but finally there is some excitement on the field.