Monday, December 3, 2012

Rex's non-decision on QB probably favors Sanchez


One day after benching quarterback Mark Sanchez, New York Jets coach Rex Ryan said he needs a little more time to decide who will get the starting nod calling signals Sunday against the Jacksonville Jaguars.

I don't need a little more time to guess what that means.

Sanchez's benching against the Arizona Cardinals, following a three-interception first half, was the first time Ryan sent the fourth-year quarterback to ride the pine. (photo: TexCap, Flickr)

Second-year Jet Greg McElroy, who served as Sanchez's first backup against the Cards due to Tim Tebow being inactive, threw the game-winning touchdown pass, though he mostly handed the ball off and totaled only 29 yards through the air in just over a quarter of action. The Jets won, 7-6.

Monday, Ryan said he'd like to make a decision by Tuesday night, and he made a case for Sanchez, Tebow and McElroy to take over the offense. But his mind is likely already made up, and my guess is he goes with his guy.

"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," Ryan said, adding that he doesn't view Sanchez's benching as a "final wake-up call."

Sanchez and Ryan are joined at the hip, with Sanchez being Ryan's first-ever first-round pick as a head coach and the pair making trips to the AFC Championship game in their first two years, going 4-2 in the postseason in the process.

We'll know by midweek, but I expect Sanchez to get the start. But he'll be on an extremely short leash, and if he struggles against the Jags, he'll be done for the year.

UPDATE:'s Jason La Canfora reported Monday night that sources have told him the Jets' coaching staff is favoring McElroy by a 65-35 margin.

I stand by my guess.

Follow Nick @NickStDenis
Follow AFC East Daily @AFCEastDaily