Regardless of whether you think Mark Sanchez should be starting over Tim Tebow at this point for the New York Jets, Sanchez's performance against the New England Patriots on Sunday figures to buy him some time in the pocket.
Sanchez went 28-of-41 for 328 yards, one touchdown and one interception in Foxboro, as the Jets were edged by Tom Brady's squad in overtime, 29-26.
Meanwhile, Tebow rushed four times for 12 yards out of the Wildcat formation. He's rushed for 76 yards on 22 carries this season.
This was Sanchez's best performance since Week 1 against the Buffalo Bills. Even in the 35-9 victory over the Indianapolis Colts in Week 6, Sanchez wasn't particularly impressive, averaging 4.6 yards per pass attempt.
The bad news for New York is that head coach Rex Ryan continues to praise Sanchez and doesn't appear willing to pull the plug on the veteran anytime soon.
While Sanchez did have a good game against New England, that was one game. Sanchez has always had problems with consistency.
Case in point: After his big game against Buffalo, Sanchez went 10-of-27 against the Pittsburgh Steelers while averaging just 5.1 yards per attempt in the 27-10 blowout loss. It wouldn't be a surprise if he were to implode against the Miami Dolphins this Sunday (like, say, at the end of last season).
Is Mark Sanchez the right man for the job in New York?
In my humble opinion, the Jets are better off starting Tebow and hoping he goes on a run like he did last season with the Denver Broncos than starting Sanchez. Sanchez may be decent moving forward, but "decent" is not what the Jets need. They need a spark plug.
For all his deficiencies, Tebow went 7-4 as starter of the Broncos last season, leading them to an improbable berth in the playoffs. The way Denver rallied around him was well-documented.
The Jets need someone to rally around. Tebow could be that guy.
Unfortunately, every good performance from Sanchez gives him another life as the Jets' starting quarterback. The cat must have nine by now.