Hustling Backwards? | Last Time Geno Smith Was NY Jets QB He Was Victim Of Vicious Locker Room Sucker Punch

The New York Jets are determined to find their starting quarterback this offseason, which could possibly include reuniting with a former Jets quarterback. Geno Smith has climbed up the Jets quarterback wish list after an impressive season as the starter for the Seahawks.

What Happened To Geno Smith In NY?

He started his career with the Jets when they drafted him in the second round of the 2013 NFL draft. Smith struggled in his first two seasons with the team. His time there went south quickly as the fans turned on him and he was the recipient of the “(Cheap) Shot Heard ‘Round the World” when he was “sucker punched” in the locker room by 260-pound linebacker and teammate teammate IK Enemkpali. The cheap shot forced Smith to miss at least six weeks with a broken jaw.

As the story goes, Smith underwent surgery to repair two fractures in his jaw. He spent the rest of the 2015 season on the bench watching veteran quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick lead the Jets to a 10-6 record, effectively ending Smith’s nightmare experience in The Big Apple.

Smith spent time as a backup for the Giants, Chargers, and Seahawks before he was made the full-time starter at the start of 2022 NFL season.

His success in Seattle has been true vindication.

Geno Smith leaving the field after a game this past season. (Photo: Getty Images)

Geno Smith Turns Career Around In Seattle

The Pro Bowl selection and NFL Comeback Player of the Year award winner had a career resurgence that has made him a hot commodity on the open market. Smith is set to become a free agent on March 15 but is expected to re-sign with the Seahawks.

“We’ve had talks, and we’re in the process of getting all that settled right now,” Smith said to SiriusXM NFL Radio in an interview. “It’s looking very good. We think we can get some things done, but obviously those things take time. This is the process that I hate about the NFL, because I just want to play football. But it’s a business as well, so we’ve got to take care of business and then we’ll get back to football.”

Jets Quarterback Play Struggles With Zach Wilson

According to ESPN, the Jets had the 15th-ranked passing offense in the NFL. They threw for 3,723 passing yards total and averaged 219 passing yards per game. Their 56.9 completion percentage was the lowest in the NFL, and their 6.4 yards per attempt was tied for the second-lowest. They also started three different quarterbacks, which is tied for second in the league.

The second-year quarterback Zach Wilson started nine games. Wilson, once the hope as the franchise quarterback, threw for 1,688 passing yards, six touchdowns, seven interceptions, and a 54.5 completion percentage.

The veteran Joe Flacco threw for 1,051 passing yards, five touchdowns, three interceptions, and a 57.6 completion percentage in five games.

The five-year veteran Mike White impressed fans the most despite going 1-3 as a starter. He had the highest yards per game of the three quarterbacks with 298, and his 58.9 completion percentage was the highest. White had the Jets in position to pull off upset wins over the Vikings and Bills.

Jets QB Wish List

In addition to Smith being named, the Jets have their eyes on Daniel Jones, Jimmy Garoppolo, Aaron Rodgers, Derek Carr, and Ryan Tannehill.

Tannehill and Rodgers are both still under contract, but the Packers are seemingly ready to move on with Jordan Love.

The Titans drafted Malik Willis with 86th overall pick in 2022 NFL draft. The team has loved Tannehill’s revitalized career with them but they still feel that they are not good enough to get over the hump. They fired general manager Jon Robinson in December, and moving on from Tannehill would save the team $27 million against the cap.

Smith is rated by CBS as the 19th-best free agent on the market, Carr is the second-best, Jones is listed as ninth, and Garoppolo is listed at 34th.

Smith started all 17 games last season and lead the Seahawks to the playoffs with a 9-8 record. He threw for the most yards (4,283), touchdown passes (30), and had the best completion percentage (69.8) out of every quarterback on the Jets wish list.

Back to top