Will Mark Sanchez Ever Start in the NFL Again?

Matthew Wolfe@@DatDudeMKWCorrespondent IIIDecember 18, 2012

NASHVILLE, TN - DECEMBER 17:  Quarterback Mark Sanchez #6 of the New York Jets walks off the field after a play in the fourth quarter against the Tennessee Titans at LP Field on December 17, 2012 in Nashville, Tennessee.  (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
Andy Lyons/Getty Images

It is official, the New York Jets have decided to bench Mark Sanchez and start second year quarterback Greg McElroy Sunday against the San Diego Chargers.

This begs the question, will Sanchez ever find another starting job in the NFL again?

The Jets had high hopes when they drafted Sanchez 5th overall in the 2009 draft. Although he has been labeled a bust by many, he has shown some signs of promise throughout his career.

Many will say it wasn't because of his contributions, but the Jets did reach the playoffs two out of the four years that Sanchez was at the helm, in fact, they made it to two AFC Championship games, including one in his rookie season.

Since then, Sanchez has seen his team go from back to back AFC Championship games, to missing the playoffs two seasons in a row.

It can be said that it is all Sanchez's fault, but think again.

His statistics won't blow you away by any means, but Sanchez did finish 9th in the league in passing touchdowns in 2011 with 26.

And although his stats did take a big hit from last year compared to this year, before this season his stats were steadily improving by the year.

Let's also not forget that Sanchez is batting against something that most quarterbacks in the NFL don't have to deal with, the ruthless New York media.

For someone in his position, Sanchez does not get the credit he deserves when dealing with the media. What many players would use as an excuse for the failure and disappointment, Sanchez just decides to ignore it and shows up to work.

It's no secret that Sanchez has not been playing great football this season, especially when put on a national stage against the Tennessee Titans and New England Patriots, but knowing that you are starting ahead of the most famous back up quarterback in history can't be an easy task.

Make no mistake about it, Sanchez is not even close to the elite quarterback that he was hyped up to be coming into the league, but his days as a starting quarterback may not be over.

He was drafted into a position that set him up for failure unless he was near perfect. Also, it just may have not been the right fit.

Sanchez has shown a few glimpses of being the quarterback that everyone thought he was going to be coming out of college, and maybe when placed in a different environment those few glimpses could turn into an effective starting quarterback.

There is no saying what his future looks like in a Jets uniform, but if he and the Jets do eventually part ways, don't be shocked if there are plenty of teams looking for Sanchez's services.