The Punch is Gone; You’re all Late To The Geno Smith Party

By Harrison Turkheimer
Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports
Geno Smith














After Monday night’s come-from-behind victory in the Georgia Dome, everyone from New York to Miami is singing the praises of New York Jets quarterback Geno Smith. His mistake-free, three-touchdown night came on national television against a very worthy opponent. Critiques did not give the Jets a punchers chance against the Atlanta Falcons, who, up until Monday seemed virtually unstoppable at home. Rex Ryan and the gang green decided to show the nation and the Falcons that they weren’t the joke that ESPN had as No. 32 in the pre season power rankings.

All that has changed now, the praises of Smith have come from all over. Saying he’s a playoff quarterback; he has great presence in the pocket; he is the real deal… Yadda, yadda, yadda. My question is this WHERE WERE ALL YOU PEOPLE LAST YEAR? Where were you when the sun was shining on the Blue Ridge Mountains of Morgantown, W.Va.? When Smith put up 656 yards and eight touchdowns in his Big 12 debut? Where were you when the West Virginia Mountaineers went to Austin, Texas to beat the University of Texas Longhorns? You were all certainly there against Kansas State University and the snowy Pinstripe Bowl to criticize. You were all there when he didn’t go No. 1 or even the first round of April’s draft…

I have had the pleasure of watching Smith play since his first snap in college. Sitting behind a big and tall Jarrett Brown, Smith learned a lot from his WVU days. His pocket presence, his arm — the intangibles have always been there, it was simply a matter of time before the world knew it. Even John Gruden spoke highly of him on Monday night. Writers across the country are always ready to jump on and off a bandwagon quicker than an Eli Manning interception (sorry, Eli), and clearly everyone one wants to jump on the Smith bandwagon. Well, honestly, we don’t want you! There’s plenty of Old Gold and Blue on this ride, and the Mountaineer faithful stand by their men no matter what.

As a WVU alum and (for better or worse) a die-hard Jets fan, Smith coming to my team (as I have stated) is a blessing and a curse. I have seen his highest highs and his lowest lows. I will stick by his football knowledge and his thirst for greatness. He is a rookie that will make mistakes, but he is also the rookie that can shine. With mediocre wideouts on Monday night, you could see what he could do. Imagine with real weapons!

Sunday’s game against the Pittsburgh Steelers is MORE important than the game Monday versus Atlanta. Why, you may ask? Now that there are believers riding his bandwagon, is it only human nature for those who were skeptical to critique and say he isn’t the real deal. I promise you this, Smith is a franchise quarterback with the mind and heart . Whether you want to drink the Geno Kool-Aid or not is your choice, but at the end of the day, all the nay-sayers will be eating crow.

Follow me on Twitter @HarrisonScottT and Check out my show, The Blind Referee @TBR_305.

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