New York Jets: Starting Josh McCown is easy, but wrong move


Josh McCown starting at quarterback is the easy move, but it is also the wrong move for the New York Jets.

Maybe someday, New York Jets fans, we will stop discussing the problems at quarterback. Someday the Jets will finally acquire that franchise quarterback they have been pining for since Joe Namath left for the West Coast. There will finally be a year when the discussion can be about who the Jets are going to put around their franchise quarterback. It will happen.

But this isn’t the year, so we continue along with the annual discussion. This year it’s a three-way competition between Josh McCown, Bryce Petty and Christian Hackenberg. The Jets bring a young roster to the table as they have sent the majority of the veterans away. Not a lot is expected of the 2017 Jets, other than that they will have the chance to draft Sam Darnold or another one member of the upcoming quarterback class.

But the 2017 season still has to be played, and the Jets need a quarterback under center. Who is it going to be? Randy Gurzi from right here at Spin Zone wrote his take, taking the position that Josh McCown is going to be the starter when the season opens. He is likely right about that. However, that is simply the easy way out and not the right choice in the long-term.

Oh, it is the easy choice to make. As Gurzi noted, McCown hasn’t been terrible his entire career. His overall record is 18-42, but he has played well in spurts. Most notably was in 2013 with the Bears when he threw for 13 touchdowns versus only one interception. His overall TD-INT ratio is 79-69. McCown is not bringing anyone a Super Bowl anytime soon, but he has the ability to hold down the fort.

So, why not now? He’s the veteran and the other two are young kids. Shouldn’t they sit on the sidelines and learn some more. Simply put, no, and here is why.

First let’s look at the team the Jets are putting out there. Other than Matt Forte, who is left on offense? Quincy Enunwa is the oldest “veteran” among the receivers. The receiver room is filled with the likes of Robby Anderson, Charon Peake, Chad Hansen and ArDarius Stewart. They drafted the last two names in the most recent draft, as well as tight end Jordan Leggett. What do these players have in common? They are young.

They are players that are here to grow with a young quarterback. The sooner the Jets can get the on-field chemistry going between the young quarterbacks and the young receivers, the better.

Starting McCown might get the offense out of the gate stronger early, but it will be counterproductive in the long-term. The Jets need to see what they have in these two quarterbacks, and that means getting them out on the field.

Petty is entering his third year. His set of games last year was just a small sampling. He was running for his life and nearly got killed against the Dolphins. When given the chance to actually be upright, he could throw it. He made poor decisions at times because he was still learning. That learning must happen on the field.

Christian Hackenberg was a second round pick. He sat for the entire first year. Rich Cimini of ESPN noted that Hackenberg was better than expected during the offseason program. He progressed and has closed the gap between him and McCown. The accuracy issue was blown out of proportion, as noted by Rich Cimini of ESPN. The team has been set up for him to be successful. He needs to be out on the field with these young players, if not in Week 1, it needs to happen quickly. It’s the only way he is going to get better.

Next: New York Jets: 5 Reasons for hope in the future

So, which take do you agree with? Let us know in the comments on either of our pieces, as well as social media.