Mark Sanchez: Why It's Time for Jets QB to Hit the Bench

Tim Keeney@@t_keenContributor IOctober 11, 2012

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - OCTOBER 08:  Mark Sanchez #6 of the New York Jets looks up after he was sacked in the second half against the Houston Texans at MetLife Stadium on October 8, 2012 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Elsa/Getty Images

At this point, if Mark Sanchez tried to be worse, he'd probably still mess up and accidentally complete some throws. 

The New York Jets' quarterback situation is about as ugly as it can possibly get right now, but head coach Rex Ryan is still sitting firm with his starter (via ESPN's Rich Cimini):

Mark Sanchez is mired in one of the worst slumps of his career, but he will remain the New York Jets' starting quarterback.

"Yeah, no question," coach Rex Ryan said Tuesday morning.

"When you look at it, he played pretty good (on Monday night)," Ryan said. "I thought he was accurate with the football."

Oh really?

Sanchez undoubtedly was hurt by Houston's relentless pass rush, J.J. Watt's Inspector Gadget arms, inconsistent receiver play, a lack of running game and plenty of other things, but anytime a player completes 14 of his 31 pass attempts, it's hard to call him accurate.

For the season, it's been just as bad for The Sanchize: 208.6 yards per game, six touchdowns to six interceptions, 66.6 QB rating (31st in the NFL), just 6.6 yards per attempt (28th) and one of the worst starts to a season from an accuracy standpoint in recent memory:

Via ESPN Stats & Information:

Quarterback Comp. PCT in Team's First 5 Games (Since 2000) Year
JaMarcus Russell 42.1 2009
Akili Smith 43.8 2000
Andrew Walter 46.2 2006
David Carr 46.3 2002
Mark Sanchez 48.4 2012

Let me just say this. When you are in a group with JaMarcus Russell, Akili Smith, Andrew Walter and David Carr, you know it's bad. 

It's not like Sanchez is just constantly throwing Hail Mary's, either. More often than not, he's dumping it off or hitting his first read. Or maybe more accurately, missing his first read. 

Call it a slump, call it whatever you want, but the fact of the matter is that Mark Sanchez is playing some of the worst football we've seen and Rex Ryan needs to get over his stubbornness. Fast.

Listen. I don't think Tim Tebow is as good as the Skip Baylesses of the world say he is. I also don't think he's as bad as, well, everyone else.

What I do know is that Tebow, while still needing a lot of development in the passing game, has a unique skill set that could, at the very least, shake up a Jets offense that has scored two touchdowns in its last 45 possessions. 

Get an athlete behind center. Get him out of the pocket. Open up the playbook. Let him run and make defenses at least have to gameplan. As the Jets receive one soul-crushing season injury after another, it's becoming more apparent than this is going to be a lost season, so what's the worst that could happen?

It's time for New York to look to the future and Tim Tebow absolutely, unequivocally has a higher ceiling that Mark Sanchez.

Heck, even give Greg McElroy a few snaps and see what he can do under center. It certainly can't get worse than this. 

Whatever the Jets' plan is, it has to involve Mark Sanchez on the bench. There's just simply no reason to do anything else.