Eddie Castro's Sports: Off The Mark

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The best words to put the Jets season in perspective would be “a roller coaster.” The team has had many ups and downs throughout the course of the year and many controversial moments as well.  All this led to the Jets going into this past Monday’s game needing a win to keep their playoff hopes alive. The scenario for the Jets was to win the final games against the Titans, Chargers and Bills in hopes of a wild card berth aided by losses from the Bengals and Steelers. On Sunday, the Bengals won their game, but the Jets got some well-needed help from the Cowboys as they defeated the Steelers. Now normally you wouldn’t call a team “hot” with just a 2-game winning streak, however, the way Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez has played this season, maybe a hot streak can get him and the team rolling. Unfortunately on Monday night, the Jets lost to the Titans 14-10, therefore eliminating them from playoff contention. Sanchez did not help at all as he had yet another horrible performance throwing 4 interceptions and 1 lost fumble. It marks the second straight year in the Rex Ryan era the Jets will miss the playoffs.

There is no word on what Sanchez’s future will be with the Jets, but you have to think, it may very well be the end of the line for him and coach Ryan. Since his rookie season in 2009, Sanchez ranks dead last in the league in the four most important statistical categories for a quarterback: (passing yards (11,887), touchdown passes (68) , completion percentage (55.2) and he has averaged at least 1 interception per game. This year so far, Sanchez has turned the ball over 24 times, which includes a staggering 17 interceptions. Also, his 87 turnovers since 2009 are second only to Eli Manning. With a guaranteed bonus of $8.25 million dollars, it is more than likely he will be wearing No.6 for the Jets next year. It may be unlikely that it will come in a starting role.

On Tuesday night during a press conference, coach Ryan announced that he would bench Sanchez for Sunday’s game against the Chargers in favor of Greg McElroy. Ryan told Sanchez about his decision after Monday night’s loss, but did not make his decision public until Tuesday. Ryan’s decision was surprising to many, after all, he does have the option to use Tim Tebow. The Jets drafted McElroy in the 7th round of last year’s draft out of Alabama. He wasn’t even in uniform for Monday’s game. Now, he will be making his 1

st career start in the NFL. So, for now, it appears that Greg McElroy will have his audition for the starting job in hopes of a full-time position in 2013. As for Sanchez and Tebow, it will be another wait and see process. All and all, there are many needs the team must address in the off-season besides the QB position. Changes will be made and the face of the Jets team and perhaps the coaching staff may very well have a new look come 2013. At the end of the day, it may seem a bit unfair that Sanchez is getting all the blame. He didn’t have his best receiver on offense (Santonio Holmes), or his best player on defense (Darrelle Revis) , due to season-ending injuries, but if you are making $60 million dollars over the next 3 years in New York, you must be able to perform, period.

Sports Notes: (Basketball)

The Knicks hope to get Carmelo Anthony back from an ankle injury in time for Friday night’s showdown at the Garden against the Chicago Bulls. Some good news for the Knicks was reported earlier in the week. Amar’e Stoudemire has been cleared by doctors to begin practicing with the team and may return on Christmas Day when they head to L.A. to play the Lakers. The Brooklyn Nets welcome the Philadelphia 76ers to the Barclays Center Sunday afternoon.   (Football) The Giants’ 34-0 loss to the Falcons looms large for the G-men as both the Redskins and Cowboys won their games on Sunday therefore creating a 3-way tie for first place in the NFC East. The Giants must win their final 2 games to get in the playoffs and hope the Redskins and the Cowboys lose their remaining 2. Eli Manning and company will have a tough task as they head to Baltimore to face the hard-hitting Baltimore Ravens.

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