When Colin Kaepernick first stepped in for the concussed and now jettisoned Alex Smith, he had no idea he would ultimately keep the job. He just kept doing what he does best. Kaepernick and the San Francisco 49ers kept on rolling, and the rest is history.
The situation may be the same for the New York Jets, but Geno Smith is not Kaepernick. He proved that last night as the quarterback was brought back down to reality.
After a controversial win last week, it was clear this would be a bigger test for Smith than the first start. Even as Smith was throwing three picks on Thursday to add to the Jets’ total of four on the night, there were some bright spots in the close defeat. The biggest factor was the surprising breakdown of the New England Patriots.
Tom Brady hit Aaron Dobson on a 39-yard pass to step out to a 7-0 lead, but the offense stumbled from there. Brady looked visibly frustrated and had trouble connecting with his young receiving corps. Had Geno Smith been able to complete a few more passes, many would say it a solid effort in the rookie’s second week.
The powers that be have to believe Smith is the best they can trot out. With Mark Sanchez in street clothes and Geno taking two steps backward, it’s up to Rex Ryan to get the Jets back on track. New York hosts the Buffalo Bills next Sunday, who are led by another promising rookie in E.J. Manuel. They will be yet another test for Ryan and the Jets.
The Jets sport a .500 record and came oh-so-close to beating the division rival Patriots in their own house. Almost doesn’t count, however, and Geno can’t lead a team if he mulls over this loss too long. Though he accepted the blame, Geno has to prepare for the Bills and go from there. Rex Ryan also needs to step up his coaching considerably and get down to it.
If Geno fails, that hot seat Ryan sits on is going to get mighty humid with the New York air.