The 2017 NFL Season has become the year of the backup Quarterback. So far, 11 teams have started a backup QB for more than one game in the season. Of those 11 teams, five are jockeying for a playoff spot. Two of those teams have already punched their ticket in. While the New York Jets are not necessarily mathematically eliminated from postseason contention, the loss of their starting QB, Josh McCown and with their last three games against potential playoff teams, the Jets hope for a surprise postseason berth have all but evaporated.
While Josh McCown had one of the best seasons in his entire career, the 38 year-old broke his left hand in a 23-0 debacle last week in Denver. Now, with the Jets season all but over, Gang Green turns to Baylor’s own Bryce Petty to begin what many Jets fans thought this season would start off as: one giant tank ride to the number one overall pick.
Petty started four games for New York last season. The Jets went 1-3 in the Petty starts. Petty was also underwhelming for the Jets as he completed just 56% of his passes, threw seven touchdowns and three interceptions. In training camp, Petty was the third best Quarterback on the Jets roster. Now, he is the starting signal-caller for the Jets as they gear up for a road game in New Orleans. Head Coach Todd Bowles spoke to the media of Wednesday and acknowledges how difficult it is to play down in Saints country, and if Bryce has to do anything different to win.
“Regardless of where he’s going and where he’s playing at, he’s getting a start this year and it’s an opportunity for him. He just has to focus on our offense and focus on himself and play his game.”
While Petty is the starter for this week, many Jets fans are anxiously waiting for Christian Hackenberg’s inevitable first start of his career. Coach Bowles isn’t thinking about another QB on his roster right now.
“We’ll see. Right now, Bryce is our starter. Bryce is the next man up. We have people at every position that want to play. We’re not jumping people over people just to play considering anything. Bryce is our starter.”
While Petty gears up for his first start of 2017, he will have the benefit of his predecessor giving him pointers from the sidelines. The knowledge a 15-year veteran like McCown can only help with the development of a young QB. Coach Bowles accepts that, but also knows that it will have to come down to the execution of Bryce Petty.
“It (McCown’s presence) can help him see the game, but he has to play on Sunday, and he’s going to be out there by himself. So he’ll be fine.”
The Jets travel to New Orleans to take on the Saints at 1:00pm on Sunday.
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