Mark Sanchez: Answer for the Jets?
Mark Sanchez has had more than his fair share of unfair scrutinizing. Does he deserve it sometimes? Yes, all quarterbacks do, but Sanchez gets bashed week in and week out, even for games he doesn’t blow. His case is more extreme than that of Tony Romo of the Dallas Cowboys. I am far from a Jets fan, but while I do not like them, they are a team that has hope for the future.
2009-2010 Sanchez Playoffs
Mark Sanchez is a Playoff winning Quarterback. No matter how you slice it, he won playoff games, even games against stern opposition. In 2009, Mark Sanchez’s regular season was a season to ignore. He threw for 12 TD’s to go along with 20 INT’s. This is to be expected from a young Quarterback. The only reason the Jets made it into the postseason is thanks to strong Defense and a powerful running game. However in the playoffs he turned it on. Yes he didn’t light it up, but he made the throws he needed to throw and won his first two playoff games, only to lose to the runners up in the 2010 SB, the Indianapolis Colts. He lead the Jets to a solid first half, but the Colts defense came to life and shut down the Jets offense the rest of the way, and the Defense couldn’t stop the Colts.
Sanchez would end his 2009-2010 season on a bittersweet note, carrying a team that hadn’t won a playoff game in five years to two straight, and hope for the future.
2010-2011 Sanchez Playoffs
The next season would mark vast improvement in his game, as he went 17 TD’s to 13 INT’s, and added 1000 yards to his resume. He would come racing back in the playoffs though, tossing 5 TD’s with only one pick. The Jet’s would upset the Colts in the wildcard round, Peyton Manning’s last game as a Colt, would upset the heavily favored #1 seed, New England Patriots, and ultimately lost to the Steelers 24-19 after throwing a pair of touchdowns with no picks. The game featured it’s fair share of questionable calls by Rex Ryan, and lack of hustle on the defensive side. I will say that Sanchez should have taken the game into his own hands, but Ryan called 16 plays that killed eight minutes off the clock, not giving Mark Sanchez an opportunity to throw for a TD until it was 3rd and 1 on the 1 yard line, which was batted down by Polomalu. The Steelers gave up a safety, Sanchez would lead his team for another TD, cutting the game to 19-24, giving his Defense a chance to stop the Steelers, which they could not do, and a miraculous comeback by Mark Sanchez and the Jets offense.
Sanchez 2011 campaign was his best yet, but due to a late season collapse due to a Holmes Sanchez feud after sitting at 8-5 the team was held from the Playoffs. His following season, after an offseason full of hope for Jets fans, was a year to forget after his now comical “butt fumble” and being benched in favor of Greg McElroy, after the Jets ignored Tim Tebow.
Sanchez has all the talent in the world, but he needs a support system around him. The O-Line was horrid his first two years and he still managed to play well. His running game disappeared in 2012 when LT retired, his receivers had a case of the drops in 2011, and his leadership was questioned, thus he threw the team on his shoulders early and could not seem to hold the weight.
Will Sanchez be a good QB in the league? That’s to be determined, but two years of mediocrity after two solid first years he deserves more credit than he is being given, and will, in my opinion, prove his doubters wrong this season. You can hold me to it D&D Best and Brightest!
Sanchez Looks at the Scoreboard Against the Bills
(Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)