Am I processing this correctly?
Did the Jets' strategy this week consist of either A)replacing quarterback Mark Sanchez with a short-term, duct-tape solution (Peyton Manning) or B) keeping Sanchez around longer and paying him more?
Because that's what it amounted to. The Jets tried to to find out if Manning was "interested in them" (emasculating way for a franchise to put it, but that's the way it was phrased). He wasn't (even more emasculating).
So the move off of that? Rewarding Sanchez with an extension which signified...what?
I guess it signified their faith in him. But isn't that as hollow as the guarantees Rex Ryan's been burping out annually since arriving in New York?
Everyone with a TV and two eyes knew Manning might be let go in March. Yet Ryan said in late December, "There's no way we're looking to replace Mark Sanchez."
Of rumored internal discussions the team was having about whether Sanchez was their guy going forward, Ryan said, "That's not true."
Well, it was. Or is. And Ryan lied. Or was clueless.
So now,to try and make Sanchez feel better and to allow his teammates to take him seriously (already a tough sell), the Jets gave him an extension. Kinda like when Kobe gave his wife a 4 million ring after his Colorado humiliation. Or last offseason when the Dolphins tried to hire Jim Harbaugh as their head coach, failed, and then had to give Tony Sparano a hollow extension. Annnd, then they fired him.
Hey fellas...mission statement.
Butthat's the thing about the Jets with Rex Ryan as their bumbling, swashbuckling leader. They don't know who they are, they have no identity.
As much as Ryan has insisted that he's just "being him" and that he's the most authentic guy in the league, the only thing that'sreal is that he has no clue what he's all about.
Whether it's lap-band surgery, teeth-whitening or the hackneyed guarantees and bloviating, so much of what Ryan does is all about "the look." Or "the sound." Or the "effect."
This year, he said, no more guarantees.
So what happened to the shoot-from-the-lip guy? Didn't work? OK, Let's change.
He's a chameleon. But the weird thing is, I don't think he's a fraud. What he says or does things, he totally believesin when he says or does them.He just has the foresight of a mole.
And because he's jovial and plain-talking, few in the media call BS on him. Too much fun to cover.
Well, now the Jets have been forced to make another move that's all about "the look."
Of course, Sanchez is so screwed up by now, he's got no clue whatever how this makes him look.
"It gives the team just a reminder that Im the leader of this team, and Im excited to get back, and Im going to be working my tail off these next few months to become the best possible starting quarterback that this franchise can have, Sanchez said in a statement.
Think the Chargers need a reminder about Philip Rivers? Or the Falcons about Matt Ryan? Or even the Bears about Jay Cutler? We're not even talking Brady, Rodgers and Brees here - just about good quarterbacks.
Who the leader is should be a truth that's self-evident. Mark Sanchez won't be the leader of the Jets until he tells Rex Ryan to -off. Until he shows that he needs no hollow validation from the organization and that he'll be fine with or without their propping him up, his teammates will shake their heads and his opponents - like the ones in Foxboro - will smile.