There is no guarantee come this upcoming NFL season that Geno Smith gets to be the New York Jets‘ starting quarterback. There is a lot of speculation that the Jets will most likely be grabbing a veteran quarterback in free agency to continue his development. Last season, he was only given that starting spot due to the injury to Mark Sanchez and it being too late to grab someone else. While Smith did decent considering he was a rookie, he has much to work on to enjoy being the Jets’ long-term investment. Going into the offseason, Smith is regularly attending a special football academy to help give him more experience and knowledge to earn his starting spot again. There is no guarantee that spot is his as the Jets are rumored to go after a free agent quarterback like Michael Vick. The goal is to have a healthy quarterback competition this summer to give the spot to the one that earns it. However, there is one candidate under the radar who could very well be a hidden gem this summer and make the Jets forget about an aging overpaid quarterback. Enter: Matt Simms.
When you think about him, many things come to mind. He is the son of Hall of Fame and Super Bowl winning quarterback, Phil Simms. Winning is in his blood based on his family legacy, and so far he hasn’t really been given a chance to truly shine with the Jets. Last year in preseason, Simms showed signs that he is capable of understanding the offense and executing it well. The most appealing aspect of his capability is that it’s yet to be seen. His potential to be something big for the Jets all depends on that opportunity earned.
Simms is by no means perfect. Even though he has a pretty strong arm, Simms needs some work on his accuracy. That’s what mostly everyone gathered from all the small opportunities he was given last year. Granted, nothing like that compares to the real situations of the regular season, but one wonders how well he would do when it matters most. In his few appearances in the regular season, he did well for the most part. Even though his opportunities came in “garbage time,” one can only imagine how his growth will be if given reps with the first team and truly executing the Jets’ offense week in, week out.
It would be beneficial for the Jets to not only be fair about this upcoming quarterback competition, but also to let Simms get an equal share of snaps and playing time. He could easily take last year as a sign that if he were to improve his accuracy during the offseason he could very well be the answer at quarterback for the Jets. The Jets don’t seem too committed to simply hand the keys over to Smith since it’s too early to tell what his story will be these next few years. Keep in mind, last season Smith had an overall quarterback rating of 66.5 percent compared to Simms and his 63.4 percent. That’s not too far off for someone who didn’t even get half the time nor snaps like Smith did. It wouldn’t make sense for the Jets to spend some crazy amount of money on a free agent quarterback towards the end of his career. It’s a waste of time to sign a free agent quarterback to start for the team when they could simply let these young gunslingers duke it out this summer. The Jets should divide up equal playing time for both these quarterbacks and see who does well from a statistic and leadership point of view. Simms would definitely be at an advantage since all he’d have to do is keep at it and of course, get some keen advice from his dad.