The New York Jets’ woes at quarterback have been an enduring storyline over the past two disappointing seasons and the team has finally started to make changes on offense.
As ESPN reported on Friday, Arizona opted to cut Kolb instead of paying his $9 million salary and $2 million bonus this season. Now, the Jets are showing interest, according to USA Today’s Mike Garafolo:
Kolb could still return to the Cardinals, as the team left the door open for an agreement on a new contract, according to a person informed of the communication between the sides. But the person, who spoke to USA TODAY Sports on condition of anonymity because the talks were to remain private, said Kolb is likely headed elsewhere and that the New York Jets are a possible landing spot.
Garafolo also notes that new Jets offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg, who coached the 28-year-old when both were with the Philadelphia Eagles, is a fan of Kolb.
This is not a group of signal-callers that will turn any heads and none of these players appear to be a long-term solution at the position.
It would be shocking to see Sanchez show improvement after a disastrous 2012 season, McElroy is a career backup at best, Tebow’s future is brighter at punt protector than at quarterback and, lastly, Garrard is 35 and has not thrown a pass since 2010.
There is no doubt the team needs to continue making changes, but signing Kolb would simply be setting him up to fail—just like he did in Arizona.
A Jets offense that was already thin at the skill positions now looks even more devoid of talent. In addition, the team’s once-dominant defense is being broken up, with LaRon Landry and Yeremiah Bell joining the mass exodus and Darrelle Revis reportedly on the trading block (per Gary Myers of the New York Daily News).
Who should start at QB for the Jets in 2013?
Kolb is not a franchise quarterback. In the right situation, he can be a capable game manager. But with the players he would have to work with in New York, he would not be able to have any more success than Sanchez or Garrard.
While neither of these two players shows much promise, they at least have the experience of playing multiple full seasons. Kolb has never done this.
The current mix of quarterbacks is unlikely to produce a player that can lead the team through a roster makeover. Committing more resources to Kolb, who also would be unable to make it out of the rebuilding process, would only slow down the team’s progress.
At this point, the Jets should be targeting quarterbacks in the draft instead of trying to add another player in free agency. There is no legitimate starter left on the open market and the team will simply have to suffer one more season of mediocre quarterback play until next offseason.
New York’s primary focus must be to construct a balanced roster with depth. When this happens, the team can put a young player under center and give him a real chance to succeed.
Adding Kolb would not give the Jets anything they don’t already have with their current quarterbacks, and in the big picture, it would be counterproductive to their long-term goals.