New York Jets: Quarterback Geno Smith’s roller coaster rookie year

Rex Ryan has named Geno Smith the starting quarterback for the New York Jets this week as they look to bounce back against the Oakland Raiders after losing three straight games.

Geno Smiths struggles have led to a three game losing streak for the New York Jets.

Geno Smiths struggles have led to a three game losing streak for the New York Jets.

Smith was the clear offensive rookie of the year a couple of months ago. The Jets were (3-2) and just came off a Monday night come from behind victory over the Atlanta Falcons. Smith had been sensational in Atlanta and had just pulled off his third come from behind fourth quarter victory within the first five weeks of the season. He was 16-of-20 for 199 yards, three touchdowns and ZERO interceptions. However, since that game against Atlanta we have seen Geno Smith’s rookie season spiral out of control.

In the last seven games, Geno Smith has been terrible.   The Jets are (2-5) in that seven game stretch and Smith has put up some of the worst performances by any quarterback all year. In the three game losing streak since the bye week, Smith has showed he has regressed: the Jets have put up 20 points in the last 3 games combined. Smith’s performances in those games: 8-of-23 for 103 yards, 3 interceptions and a 0.7 total QBR against Buffalo, and 9-of-22 for 127 yards, 2 interceptions and a 3.8 QBR when they played Baltimore. Against Miami this past week, Smith was 4-of-10 for 29 yards an interception and 1.6 QBR.

Smith’s total QBR over his last 5 starts is 3.8 and is the first quarterback since JaMarcus Russell in 2006 to have a Total QBR under 15 in 5 straight games. The Jets rank last in the league in passing yards and Smith leads the league in interceptions with 19. Smith has as many games with a single-digit total quarterback rating (6) as he has games with a double-digit rating.

Its clear that Geno Smith’s performances are hurting the Jets’ offense. In every loss this season the Jets haven’t scored more than 14 points, proving that the offense is the main weakness of this team. But does Geno Smith deserve all the blame?

His stats may say so, but let’s remember the Jets talent on offense is below average. Bilal Powell and Chris Ivory have not performed well and only have 3 touchdowns between them this year. The Jets’ receiving corps has been wounded with injuries all season and have not been at full strength. The offensive line has also been terrible. The Jets are tied for second in the league in sacks allowed with 42. The Jets are second in the NFL with 27 giveaways, something Rex Ryan preached the Jets would improve on after last year’s disaster.

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With all being said I think Geno Smith gives the Jets the best chance to win right now. However, I don’t see the Jets winning many games the rest of the season. Smith and the offense has struggled and has turned out to be what everyone expected in the beginning of the year. If Smith is going to be the future for the organization, they need to acquire more talent to put around him to help him succeed. I think with a better supporting cast we can get a better evaluation of Smith and see if he will be the quarterback of the New York Jets for years to come.

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