We can go into the many pros and cons of acquiring Tony Romo, Jay Cutler or any other quarterback this off-season for the New York Jets, but the fact remains, it’s still just Week 11 of the current NFL season and none of them will be under center when the Jets play the Patriots on Nov. 27.
Instead, the Jets need to focus on this season and at 3-7, figure the playoffs are out of reach, but they need to keep competing every week, even though their role is now spoiler.
However, Todd Bowles owes it to his employer to see if the Jets need to go out and get a Romo or someone else or if they may have something here with Bryce Petty.
Right now, Bowles is not commenting on who he’s starting and gave a very open-ended response when asked about his newly found quarterback controversy.
“We’ll evaluate that next week as we go forward,” he said after the Jets 9-6 loss to the Rams. “We have a bye week to evaluate it and I’ll see how (Ryan Fitzpatrick) feels. We’ll watch the film on Bryce and make a determination middle of next week.”
Look, if the coach wants to mull it over his Thanksgiving turkey and give it some time, who are we to argue? But while digging into his cranberry sauce, he needs to come up with the same conclusion:
Petty needs to start the rest of the season and the Jets need to take the training wheels off his offense.
Bowles is programmed to win games. That’s what coaches do. But with seven losses already, there’s no need to worry about winning. The season is a lost cause and so it’s time make the best of it.
And don’t worry about Jets Nation. They will understand. Fans, first and foremost, care about winning, but if winning is out – and in this case it’s out – then they want hope.
Petty may not give them that, but starting him gives the team a direction.
Let’s say Petty is moving the offense by the time the Bills come into town on New Year’s Day. Then the club may not move on getting a veteran quarterback. Or if they do, general manager Mike Maccagnan will sign one to be Petty’s caddie next season.
Romo will cost a lot of money and acquiring him means paying probably a king’s ransom to the Cowboys, while absorbing his contract, which looks to be about a $24 million cap hit. If the Jets happen to have a young energetic play-caller, then Jerry Jones can find someone else as a trading partner.
But unless you play Petty, you never know what he’ll give you.
That said, Bowles doesn’t just need to start Petty, he needs to open up the offense for him too. The coach didn’t do himself any favors on Sunday by playing it close to the vest. He needs to see if Petty can run a higher octane offense, even if it means seeing mistakes from his quarterback.
And you never know, maybe Petty will surprise everyone.
But none of this happens if Fitzpatrick is starting again. Fitz is a nice guy, but he has proven to be a not ready for primetime player. Fortunately, the Jets played that move right when they waited to sign him to a one-year deal right before training camp.
And now Fitz’s time is over. The Jets need to move on these last six games and the only way of moving forward is to start Petty for the rest of the season.
You know it. I know it. Let’s see if Bowles knows it.