Todd Bowles is obviously a loyal guy, but for some reason, his blind mantra of Ryan Fitzpatrick or bust may be starting to hurt the Jets.
His quarterback did practice today, but on a limited basis, which for most 3-6 teams means go to the rookie backup, just to see if he has anything.
But of course, Bowles is taking a wait and see with Fitz.
“As of this time, I’m not (sure he will play),” Bowles said. “I’ll see how he’s feeling tomorrow and Friday and get a better gauge and see how many reps and how much running around he can do.”
Why is this an issue? With the playoffs pretty much out of the question, especially with two games on the docket with the New England Patriots next month, so why is Bowles holding out hope for Fitzpatrick, when he can easily start Bryce Petty?
A 100 percent Petty is certainly better than a hobbled Fitz, right?
It may not be as black and white as us reporter types like to make this issue out to be. Petty never started a game before and maybe the Jets coach wants to hide a dirty little secret.
You have to start wondering if this isn’t about Fitzpatrick, but about Petty.
Remember, a few years ago when the Jets employed a future baseball player named Tim Tebow? And remember Rex Ryan refusing to play him because,he didn’t think he could play football and maybe he didn’t want to hurt his future baseball career? Maybe here, Bowles doesn’t think Petty is just not up to snuff.
Not so, said Bowles: “I think he’s capable of starting. It’s just a matter of Ryan is ahead of him right now. As Bryce gets more reps, he’ll get comfortable with them. Bryce has things he can do in games if we have to play him or if he has to start that I’m very comfortable with.”
If not, then what? If Fitzpatrick goes down with a serious injury, because he’s not 100 percent this weekend, then Bowles will be forced to go to Petty the rest of the season.
But start Petty this week and let Fitz heal, then his No. 1 quarterback will have two weeks to heal with the bye week coming up. You don’t have to be Vince Lombardi to figure out this is the best move for a 3-6 team.
Fitz comes back at 100 percent and Petty gets some valuable experience. Win or lose this week, this makes the most sense. No one is going to accuse Bowles of throwing a game here.
But Bowles seems to have made up his mind. It’s Fitzpatrick or bust this week. Unless his quarterback doesn’t take some snaps on Friday and prove to everyone he is out, you can probably expect No. 14 under center Sunday against the Rams.
Bowles may be playing coy here. He did it two weeks ago with naming a backup quarterback. But frankly what is he trying to hide. Do you think the Rams are going to go through the film from the preseason or those four downs from last week? It just doesn’t make sense.
The coach seems like a good man and no matter how the Jets do this season; he will probably get another year. So there’s no reason for secrecy here.
Can we get an answer coach?