Monday, April 6, 2009


The more I think about it, the more uneasy I feel about the New York Jets QB situation. Don't get me wrong, I am impressed with the improvements new coach Rex Ryan has made to the defense. He went out and signed Bart Scott, Lito Sheppard, Jim Leonhard, Marques Douglas. The Jets have also added Howard Green to back up Big Kris Jenkins at NT. With a strong core of returning players, the defense is shaping up quite well. The offense on the other hand, is another story.

With the departure of Brett Favre, and the Bears winning the bid for Jay Cutler, the New York Jets quarterback situation is cause for concern. Kellen Clemens, Brett Ratliff, and Erik Ainge are the current quarterbacks for the Jets, and head coach Rex Ryan thinks one of these guys can be a starter. Let's take a look at the field...

The Favorite. Kellen Clemens is the only one of the three to have started a game in the NFL, and he has a 5-11 touchdown/interception ratio. Clemens has shown upside, but his 3-5 record as a starter is shaky at best. In Clemens favor, he faced a savage Baltimore Ravens defense in his debut, and played behind a WEAK offensive line. Rex Ryan kept offensive coordinator Brian Schottenhiemer, and also brought in Matt Cavanaugh to coach the QB's. He felt it would be easier for Clemens to develop under the same system. Cavanaugh is there to get the quarterbacks to the next level. Even that consolation doesn't make me feel better about him though.

Another player that Coach Ryan said will have a shot at the starting job is last years 5th round pick, Erik Ainge. He was suspended for four games in 2008 for violating the steroid policy. Other than that, he hasn't been anywhere on the radar. So i would have to say he is the biggest long shot for the Jets starting job, and DEFINITELY is NOT the answer for this year.

Now that we got the favorite and the long shot out of the way, it's time to talk about the last player in the field. The Dark Horse. Brett Ratliff has been constantly improving since playing on the practice squad in 2007. He has generated some buzz due to his performance during 2008 preseason, when he had a 122.6 passer rating. During four preseason outings he threw four touchdowns with 1 interception. Although he has upside for the future, I just can't hang my hat on a guy that hasn't thrown a pass during the regular season. But if Kellen Clemens doesn't take care of business, Ratliff could be looking at the opportunity of a lifetime.

The NFL draft could also bring another option at QB for the long term solution. Matthew Stafford will be gone when the Jets pick at #17. USC's Mark Sanchez may fall to the Jets in the draft, but word on the street is that he is climbing in value. Sanchez really impressed a lot of teams during his pro day, and this leads me to believe he will not be available at 17. The New York Jets were also impressed with Kansas State's Josh Freeman. They liked what they saw during his workout, and it wouldn't surprise me if they grabbed him up later on. If they don't get Freeman or Sanchez, I think there are still some late round gems. Just a few of the other quarterbacks in the draft: Graham Harrell(Texas Tech), Nate Davis(Ball State), Rhett Bomar(Sam Houston State), Chase Daniel(Missouri), and Stephen McGee(Texas A&M).

So the race is on for Clemens, Ratliff, and Ainge. Rex Ryan thinks one of these three is capable of leading the Jets this year. Kellen Clemens said he can lead the Jets this year. But will he? Will it be Ratliff? Or Ainge? If not, Byron Leftwich is still at home waiting for a call.
That Jets have a lot to think about.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Why does Jay Cutler have to take the heat?

The whole Jay Cutler/ Denver Broncos feud has gotten out of hand. Although I do believe Jay Cutler is being somewhat immature, Josh McDaniels was out of line. Jay Cutler was drafted in Denver to be the QB of the future, and had a pro bowl year in 2008. I can totally understand why he is upset with being shopped around. When Denver hired McDaniels, Cutler said he was excited to learn from him. McDaniels even allegedly said the reason he went to Denver was to work with Cutler. Then Josh McDaniels throws Cutler's name in trade talks that would bring Matt Cassell to Denver and send Cutler somewhere else. I can understand that McDaniels had a chance to get Cassell who was his project at New England, and went for it. But it didn't work out, and he had amends to make. He didn't call Cutler, come clean, and apologize! He denied it, then when that didn't fly, he sends Cutler text messages. From this point on it was two guys who bumped heads and refuse to give an inch.
People have been ripping Jay Cutler for ignoring the calls and letting it go this far. Yes, Jay Cutler let the situation get out of hand, and now it has snowballed out of control. I believe he was trying to get his point across, that he was not happy with being lied to, and went to far. But I can't help but think WHY this all happened. Josh McDaniels wasn't happy with a pro bowl quarterback, he wanted Matt Cassell. McDaniels showed up in Denver telling everyone what they wanted to hear, and got caught sidewinding. This situation is not Jay Cutler's doing. He had a big part in the escalation of the situation, but he is not the cause. In the end business is business, and Cutler should understand that. But Josh McDaniels lied to him, and lost his trust.
Josh McDaniels is not ready to coach a squad! He is just as immature as Cutler. His decision making should be brought into question for trying to shop Cutler in the first place.
Now Denver is stuck with Kyle Orton, and the Bears just recieved a young pro bowl quarterback for their team. Good job McDaniels!