By Nick Delahanty
Once again, the New York Jets might have a quarterback problem on their hands.
During Sunday’s loss to the Oakland Raiders, both Ryan Fitzpatrick (torn ligaments in his non-throwing thumb) and Geno Smith (shoulder/abdomen) suffered injuries that could sideline them for some time.
Rookie Bryce Petty is on the current roster, but with his lack of experience, it is very unlikely that the Jets turn to him to start games anytime soon.
It is still unclear as to how long Fitzpatrick and Smith may be sidelined, but according to Pro Football Talk, the Jets were making calls during Sunday’s game in search of available quarterbacks, both available via trade or free agency.
Here are some potential options that could become available for the Jets:
Matt Flynn, Josh Freeman, Jake Heaps, Christian Ponder, T.J. Yates,
Yes, the free agent market is rather thin at the quarterback position.
One possible free agent target was shot down early, as ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter reported that the team had no interest in former Houston Texans QB Ryan Mallet. Mallet was traded to the Texans when current Jets general manager Mike Maccagnan worked for the team, but it appears as if the Jets will look at other options.
Another potential option could be Matt Flynn, who was with the Jets earlier in the season. Flynn spent a small chunk of time with the team earlier on in the preseason. In the event the Jets need a backup, Flynn would be the most logical choice, as he should be pretty familiar with the team’s offensive scheme.
Kellen Clemens (Chargers), Chase Daniel (Chiefs), Mike Glennon (Buccaneers), Chad Henne (Jaguars), Zach Mettenberger (Titans), Colt McCoy (Redskins), Dan Orlovsky (Lions), Matt Schaub (Ravens)
Again, there is no superstar quarterback on this list, but there are some interesting trade options for the Jets if they pursue them.
Two of the more intriguing names are Zach Mettenberger and Mike Glennon. Before Marcus Mariota’s injury, Mettenberger was an interesting trade option. Mettenberger has started the past two weeks for the Titans and the team may be unwilling to trade him with Mariota’s status still up in the air.
Glennon quickly fell out of favor in Tampa Bay, as rookie Jameis Winston has taken the reigns as the starting quarterback. Although he has struggled in the NFL, Glennon has showed signs of promise, and could ultimately be a low risk, high reward type of trade for the Jets.
The other quarterbacks on the list are players who have expiring contracts. If the Jets look for a cheaper solution, these guys could definitely come into play before Tuesday’s trade deadline.
BIG NAMES, VERY UNLIKELY:
Robert Griffin III, Drew Brees
If you’re a Jets fan, don’t expect either one of these guys to be in a Jets’ uniform next week.
We haven’t seen much of “RGIII” this season, as Kirk Cousins won the starting quarterback job out of training camp for the Redskins. With his $16 million dollar team option likely to be rejected, a RGIII trade to the Jets or any other team is extremely unlikely. It looks like the Redskins will look to hold on to their former first-round pick until his contract is up.
Brees would be the ideal grab for the Jets, who could definitely use a quarterback of his caliber to lead their offense. With the offensive weapons the Jets have, Brees would make the team’s offense much better, but it is very unlikely the Saints will part with their future Hall of Fame quarterback at this time, especially after his seven touchdown performance against the New York Giants.
There are a few different options the Jets could pursue, but it all truly depends on the severity of the two injuries the team suffered today. No team likes to deal with injuries, but the Jets must assess them as quickly as possible so they can make a move if needed before Tuesday’s 4:00 p.m. trade deadline.