It has been a season filled with frustration and more than a fair share of gut wrenching plays for the New York Jets, and this past Sunday’s 28-7 loss in Seattle there was a play that served as a microcosm of both where this season has gone and the direction the franchise seems to be lumbering toward.The play itself is, on the surface, hard to take. In a hostile environment like Seattle, an early lead can silence the crowd and defray its advantage. The Jets seemed poised to seize that moment, then watched it evaporate into thin air in the span of seconds. It’s a punch to the gut on many levels. Bigger than that play, bigger than the loss to Seattle, even bigger than the three-game losing streak that has the Jets’ season teetering on the brink of oblivion is what’s developing in the psyche of this team and what’s developing in between the ears of the team’s starting quarterback.On the whole, Offensive Coordinator Tony Sparano’s play was run to perfection but for one player: the frazzled looking Sanchez who botched it. Why he did is not an easy question to answer. Most would probably simply accept his inadequacy, shrug their shoulders and say Sanchez is inconsistent at best, downright reckless at worst. But, there’s something else at work here, something that this franchise’s owner and general manager should take a good, long look at and wonder how they got to this debacle in the first place.,sending Sanchez to the sidelines and presumably reshaping the offense into the wildcat. Tebow never got to run a play, though, because Keller committed a killer false start penalty. Cue Sanchez, rushing back onto the field as the situation has changed and a befuddled Tebow dejectedly runs off only to see Sanchez throw the crushing INT.How do you run a team like this? As has happened numerous times this season, Sanchez completed a pass to Keller early in the 4th quarter for 32 yards, their best gain of the game since the aforementioned Kerley play, and then was promptly yanked, again, for Tebow. The next pass Sanchez attempted, he was sacked by Sherman and inexplicably tried to shovel pass it—or something—fumbled trying to do “too much,” and that was your ballgame.We’ve seen this occurrence all season and it hasn’t worked. Not once. Unless you want to consider Tebow falling forward for two yards on 3rd-and-1, working—which you could, I suppose—this has been a failed experiment. It was an experiment that had it flaws since Day 1, but that argument I’ll save for later.It has been disastrous not only for Sanchez, but for Tebow as well. Forget his lack of prowess as a quarterback. How do you trot Tebow out, consistently, for just one play at a time all season?
How do you run a team like this? As has happened numerous times this season, Sanchez completed a pass to Keller early in the 4th quarter for 32 yards, their best gain of the game since the aforementioned Kerley play, and then was promptly yanked, again, for Tebow. The next pass Sanchez attempted, he was sacked by Sherman and inexplicably tried to shovel pass it—or something—fumbled trying to do “too much,” and that was your ballgame.This is really about Sanchez though. He looks shaken, he looks downtrodden; the game does not look fun for him right now. I’m not blaming Tebow one bit for it, I’m certainly not exonerating Sanchez—because he has looked awful at times this season—I’m looking directly at our front office. Before I really take them to the woodshed though, let’s start with the acquisition of Tebow.This is certainly stating the obvious, but Woody Johnson and Mike Tannenbaum, what the hell were you thinking? You pick up an almost $3 million cap hit, at the expense of two draft picks, to backup the guy you just gave a 5-year extension to? A guy who makes more than $10 million a year? Instead of providing your 50 million dollar man with a reliable, consistent core of receivers, an offensive lineman or two to play with Pro Bowlers like Nick Mangold and D’Brickashaw Ferguson and an NFL proven backup at running back, you go out and get a backup quarterback who wants to start. Another huge difference between Tebow and Smith.And, Mr. Johnson, don’t give me any of this we wanted Tebow because “he makes our team better.” You wanted him for two reasons–inexplicable reasons, if you ask me. For one, Tebow draws interest, and interest drives the sale of PSLs. Johnson ran through more than a 20-year waiting period for season tickets in one offseason due to the controversial practice of including a one-time only fee—a big one—for the exclusive right to “own” your seat.Tebow and head coach Rex Ryan kind of get thrown into the middle of this whole mess. Ryan and Sparano have shown they really don’t know what to do with Tebow. Really, this is just further evidence that this is a front office driven acquisition.Where does this leave Sanchez and the Jets franchise? At the moment Sanchez seems like a lost cause, and with his cap hit he’s not going anywhere until at least the 2014 season. It’s really too late for this whirlwind of disaster to change much this season. This roster is not changing, and as little as some of the Jets players want to admit it, they are not a playoff team. Right now, most teams would pencil in a “W” looking at this Jets team.They—and Jets fans—don’t have much of a choice because of Sanchez’s contract, but how about Johnson and Tannenbaum go into this offseason not trying to write the final chapter on “The Ways to Ruin a Quarterback?”