A little more than 24 hours after the Jets’ announcement that third string quarterback Greg McElroy will start on Sunday at home vs. the San Diego Chargers, reports are already trickling in about the team’s plans to move on from Mark Sanchez as their franchise quarterback.
According to Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News, the Jets plan to explore trading Sanchez this off-season, presumably to a team willing to absorb some portion of his guaranteed $8.25 million base salary (His cap figure for 2013 is a whopping $12.8 million). Mehta explains that any decision to look for trade partners does not necessarily mean that Sanchez will not return to New York next year and compete for the starting job, but it does seem to indicate that the Jets are in the beginning stages of moving on from “The Sanchize.”
Mehta also adds that Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick, who is expected to be released in the off-season after losing his starting job to rookie QB Nick Foles, “would be amenable to coming to the Jets if Sanchez is out of the equation.” According to Mehta – who cites a team source – Rex Ryan has always had an “affinity” for Vick, and “loves” Vick. (You mean, like he loved Tebow? Too soon?)
It should come as no surprise that Mehta is the one to drop this story — he has made a habit out of dropping scandalous bombs on Jets Nation at curious times. I am not calling the validity of Manish’s report into question but I think it’s worth noting. All reporters have team sources and this report in particular does seem rather speculative, considering we have no idea whether or not Mike Tannenbaum and Rex Ryan – the people supposedly making these trades and acquisitions – will even be back next season. But most of these speculative reports tend to have some truth in them, so it’s all worthy of consideration.
(FWIW, SNY and NFL.com’s Adam Schein has a source of his own on the Vick-t0-the-Jets rumor, and Schein’s source had a different take: ”There’s no chance…I’m laughing.” So, there is that).
It’s impossible to know exactly what is going on behind the scenes, but I can tell you that these Vick rumors will continue to circulate until he finds a new home in 2013. (Many analysts and reporters have suggested that Vick could be a good fit in New York, despite the fact that Michael appears has a turnover problem equal to that of Mark Sanchez).
As for Sanchez, I am unconvinced that many NFL teams would be willing to offer the Jets much financial relief in order to acquire him as a backup (because let’s be real — no team is going to make him the starter after the show he put on this season), and the Jets may be up shit creek in this regard. But ultimately, a move is the best thing for both Sanchez and the Jets, and the team may ultimately be forced to eat the money from the ridiculous extension “cap genius” Mike Tannenbaum cooked up this spring.
It will certainly be interesting to watch this unfold, but before you get your panties in a bunch, sit tight — we have to see what happens with the general manger and head coach before we start making plans at the quarterback position.