Joe Namath always preferred style over substance.
The New York Jets legend is basically a combination of Tim Tebow and Mark Sanchez—Tebow is a winner and Sanchez is flashy (or at least he tries to be). However, when asked who he believes is the better quarterback, the Hall of Famer did not hesitate.
The Star-Ledger’s Jenny Vrentas reported that Namath said the “sensational” Sanchez is “much better” than Tebow.
Not once did he second-guess himself, either. Namath continued:
There’s no doubt about it, there’s no doubt about it at all. At this point, certainly. And Mark’s going to get better. He’s going into his fourth year. Golly, I remember a team that won a championship with a quarterback in his fourth year. I hope it happens again.
Namath led the Jets to a victory in Super Bowl III in his fourth year in the NFL, but Sanchez isn’t even guaranteed to hold on to his starting job for the entire 2012 season. After relentless fan pressure and a disastrous start for the Denver Broncos a season ago, John Fox handed Tebow the reins in Mile High. If the Jets stumble out of the starting blocks, New York’s end result won’t differ from Denver’s.
Not at a loss for words, Namath gave his two cents on the Jets’ potential QB controversy and how Sanchez will respond to it:
That’s going be sensitive; that’s going to be tough. We’ll wait and see what’s happening. Of course, when things aren’t going well, we’re a little bit touchy, and it’s easy to get upset with some things, some things can get on your nerves. As a quarterback, I’d like to take every snap in practice that I can get. It’s going to remain to be seen how many snaps, how they share the snaps in practice come regular-season time.
On that note, according to ESPN’s Rich Cimini, Sanchez revealed a near-brawl with Rex Ryan in an interview with GQ last summer. He said that after Ryan told reporters that he considered benching him in the third-quarter of a loss to the Miami Dolphins, he “wanted to fight him.”
It doesn’t sound like there’s going to be a tea party in the Jets locker room if Ryan benches Sanchez for Tebow at any point in the 2012-13 campaign. For the team’s sake, Namath better be right. Sanchez better be the superior QB or his immaturity will lead to a schism within the squad.
David Daniels is a featured columnist at Bleacher Report and a syndicated writer.