Jets’ Rex Ryan says he’s sticking with Mark Sanchez at QB
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Rex Ryan insists it is not time for a quarterback change, no matter who thinks it might benefit the Jets if Tim Tebow stepped in for Mark Sanchez.
The Jets coach said Monday he knows ‘‘in my heart’’ that switching quarterbacks is not the move that will jump-start the team, even after Sunday’s embarrassing 34-0 loss to the San Francisco 49ers. Ryan says there’s plenty more that needs to improve than just quarterback play — although Sanchez needs to bounce back from a few lousy performances.
Ryan says Sanchez gives the Jets (2-2) the best chance to win games as the starting quarterback. But, while they are standing by Sanchez right now, perhaps their biggest potential playmaker — Tebow — is just mostly standing by.
Tebow was expected to bring a spark to the team by confusing defenses and making big plays in the Wildcat offense. So far, the Tebow Wildcat experiment has been a dud. He has played in just 31 of the Jets’ 257 offensive snaps, and Tebow has done little to strike fear in opposing defenses when he has been out there.
‘‘We haven’t been as successful at running the Wildcat as I thought we would,’’ Ryan said. ‘‘I think that’s fair to say, but again, without question, I’m not ready to give up on him. I think the Wildcat is tough to defend and I’ve always said that.’’
Ryan did his best to defuse any talk about a change at the position, declaring Sanchez the undisputed starter after Sunday’s game and again Monday.
‘‘I just know in my heart, right now, that this is not the time,’’ Ryan said when asked what it would take for him to switch quarterbacks. ‘‘I think Tim is an outstanding player and I think Mark is. Right now, I think Mark gives us our best opportunity to win.’’
The Jets did get some good news Monday: Santonio Holmes’s left foot is not broken. X-rays were negative on the wide receiver’s foot after he was injured Sunday.
Holmes is still expected to be sidelined for at least a few weeks, and that’s bad news for an offense that is struggling mightily. Ryan said the team was awaiting results of an MRI, adding that they were ‘‘shipped to different people.’’
‘‘I think depending on the severity of, I don’t know the exact term, but if it’s muscle, it could heal much quicker,’’ Ryan said.
‘‘If it’s something else, ligaments or whatever, then it would take much longer. But, it’s good news on the fact that the X-ray was negative.’’
The Jets also signed troubled cornerback Aaron Berry, giving him a chance at reviving his NFL career. Berry was arrested twice this summer and cut by the Detroit Lions. With All-Pro cornerback Darrelle Revis likely out for the season with a knee injury, Berry gives the Jets much-needed depth in the secondary.
To make room on the roster, the Jets waived tight end Dedrick Epps, who hurt his right knee Sunday when he caught a 9-yard pass from Tebow.
KC sticks with Cassel
Romeo Crennel reaffirmed that Matt Cassel will remain the Chiefs’ starting quarterback. The embattled Cassel has thrown a league-leading seven interceptions, including three first-half picks in Sunday’s 37-20 loss to San Diego. He has also fumbled the ball away three times, and was bailed out of another apparent fumble by the officiating crew. Chiefs general manager Scott Pioli also stood behind what he believes to be his franchise quarterback ever since acquiring Cassel from the Patriots for a second-round draft choice, and signing him to a $63 million deal that included $28 million guaranteed . . . Despite the continued struggles of the Seahawks offense and the worst passing game in the NFL, Pete Carroll is not ready to make a switch from rookie Russell Wilson at quarterback. Any decision to perhaps go to backup Matt Flynn is also complicated by the Seahawks being unsure whether a sore elbow that limited Flynn at the end of the preseason would allow him to be fully able to handle the starter’s workload. Carroll said Wilson remains the Seahawks’ best option despite throwing three interceptions in Sunday’s 19-13 loss in St. Louis. Seattle’s passing offense is last in the league with just 523 net yards in four games.
Jake Locker has no structural damage to his left, nonthrowing shoulder and coach Mike Munchak said the Titans quarterback will be day-to-day this week. Locker dislocated his shoulder Sunday early in a 38-14 loss to Houston when sacked by Texans cornerback Glover Quin in an injury Munchak said happened from the quarterback slamming back into the turf, not from the hit itself. He watched the rest of the game with his arm in a sling and had an MRI Monday. Munchak said the Titans will know more in the next couple of days whether or not Locker will play Sunday at Minnesota. Matt Hasselbeck will start if Locker is unable to play . . . The Steelers hope to get injured linebacker James Harrison and safety Troy Polamalu back for Sunday’s game against the Eagles. The two were on the field as the Steelers returned from their bye week. While Harrison remained vague about the chances his surgically repaired left knee will be ready to play for the first time this season, Polamalu is optimistic his strained right calf is no longer an issue. ESPN.comContinued...