The New York Jets lost a close one to the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 1 and while many in the media and the fan base felt positive (though disappointed) about the outcome, some fans are already clamoring for backup Bryce Petty.
Some fans are certifiable.
By no means is anyone saying Ryan Fitzpatrick played like a future Hall of Famer on Sunday. He continued to look rusty, his interception was on an awful and foolish throw and we know he’s not the future of the franchise.
All that being said, pulling the trigger on a quarterback change isn’t just throwing the baby out with the bathwater, it’s setting the baby on fire as well.
Meaning no disrespect to Petty, who has shown a lot of improvement over the last year, but in no way does adding Petty to the offensive formula make things better. More to the point, it doesn’t change the things which cost the Jets the game.
It wouldn’t change two missed kicks (one an extra point) by Nick Folk. It wouldn’t change the defense’s inability to stop Andy Dalton on the Bengals’ final drive. It wouldn’t get safety help to Darrelle Revis on A.J. Green’s touchdown (or any of his 180 yards).
Petty wouldn’t have changed any of those things. Perhaps you could argue that he might have improved upon Fitzpatrick’s 189 yards or found Brandon Marshall more than three times. Sure, that’s possible, but he might also have made mistakes — excusable due to inexperience but bad nonetheless — which could have cost the Jets the game in other ways.
We all assumed that the boo-birds would come out for Fitzpatrick at some point in the opening six games of the season. I wrote about it back in June — there’s little chance he comes through this without the fan base (fairly or unfairly) calling for his head.
After one game though? That’s madness.
The Jets made the decision to roll with Fitzpatrick this season — with Geno Smith as his backup, incidentally, not Petty — and there’s no logic in changing jockeys as the horse is just leaving the gate.
We knew this would be a rough opening slate of games no matter who was under center. Along with the Bengals, the Jets face the Bills and Chiefs on the road, the Seahawks at home, then the Steelers and Cardinals on the road.
Seriously, if you like Petty, why would you wish that on him as his first games as a professional quarterback? The Chiefs, Seahawks, Steelers and Cardinals are a murderer’s row of defenses and Rex Ryan always finds a way to get the Bills up for a Jets game. He also loves to blitz the heck out of young and inexperienced quarterbacks. There are many things which Ryan is bad at as a head coach, but facing and wrecking young quarterbacks is not one of those.Fitzpatrick isn’t the second coming of Joe Namath. He’s not even the second coming of Chad Pennington or Vinny Testaverde. He’s more like the third coming of Mark Sanchez.
He’s the guy the Jets chose to lead them this season, though, and you don’t bail on that after one game just because he proves to be just as mediocre as we all knew he was.
Certainly not for a guy who has no track record, and who you have no idea what he’ll do under center.
Change for the sake of change isn’t progress — it’s madness.