Rex Ryan's Loyalty to Mark Sanchez Will Be His Ultimate Undoing

Jesse Reed@@JesseReed78Correspondent IOctober 29, 2012

Jan. 16, 2011; Foxboro, MA, USA; New York Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez (6) and head coach Rex Ryan prior to the AFC Divisional Playoff game against the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: John Munson/The Star-Ledger via US PRESSWIRE
The Star-Ledger-US PRESSWIRE

Rex Ryan's refusal to bench Mark Sanchez will get him fired. 

According to ESPN New York's Rich Cimini:

Ryan said he may consider changes in starting lineup. "We'll look at everything" -- but not QB apparently. #Jets

— Rich Cimini (@RichCimini) October 29, 2012


The New York Jets are in a tail spin at the midway point of the 2012 NFL season, sitting in last place in the AFC East with a record of 3-5. And while it's not fair to pin the entire thing on Sanchez, there's no doubt that he's a huge part of the problem. 

Many fans point to the lack of talent surrounding Sanchez as the reason for his struggles, but when you compare him to guys like Sam Bradford or even Kevin Kolb, it's clear that he's at the bottom of the barrel. 

Sanchez 144 272 1,736 52.9% 10 8 7
Bradford 153 249 1,797 61.4% 8 7 2
Kolb 109 183 1,169 59.6% 8 3 2


Bradford has an average running game backing him up (No. 18 in the NFL), but he has much less to work with everywhere else than Sanchez. He has been sacked five more times than Sanchez, and his receiving corps (tight end included) makes the one Sanchez is working with in New York look amazing. 

Kolb has the worst offensive line in the NFL in front of him. This unit gives up five sacks per game and ranks No. 29 in the league in rushing yards per game. Still, he has managed to get the ball to his receivers and has stayed away from throwing interceptions.

The Jets offense is going nowhere fast. Sanchez looks more and more confused by the week, and his confidence is at an all-time low. He doesn't trust what he sees on the field, and it's clear that the Jets need to try something different. 

Ryan's being stubborn, though, in his blind support of Sanchez. His latest remarks, via's Cimini:

I think Mark gives us the best chance to win, that's how I feel. Can Tim be successful? Yeah, absolutely, and we need to take a look at that as well. But in my opinion, Mark as the starting quarterback gives my football team the best chance to win.

Besides the insane devotion to a guy that continues to play worse and worse, what I don't like about this statement from Ryan is that he's going with his feelings instead of taking a cold, hard look at his team. 

"I feel" doesn't get the job done in the NFL. 

Ryan, for whatever reason, refuses to make the necessary adjustments to his team. As a result, his position as head coach of the Jets is clearly in jeopardy. 

Jon Fox had the guts to go unconventional last season when the Denver Broncos were sinking. His decision to go with Tebow saved his team's season. Ryan needs to take a page from Fox's book and make the change, or he won't be the head coach of the Jets next season. 

Sanchez is not the guy, but Tebow might be. At this point in the season, it's worth a try. Ryan's not having any of it, though, and his stubborn devotion to Sanchez will end up being his undoing. 


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