Geno Smith benched for Matt Simms at halftime of Jets’ Week 13 game
With Geno Smith mired in a seemingly endless slump, the New York Jets pulled the plug at halftime on Sunday. After being outgained 265-39 in the first half by the Dolphins, the Jets benched Smith in favor of Matt Simms to begin the third quarter.
Smith was 4-of-10 for just 29 yards and an interception over the first two quarters — and the Jets had less total yards on offense prior to the half (39) than the Dolphins had plays (50).
A second-round pick in the 2013 draft, Smith has not thrown a touchdown pass in his past five starts, a drought dating to the Jets’ 30-27 win over New England on Oct. 20. He also has not completed more than nine passes in any one game since October, topping out with a 9-for-22 showing last week. Counting Sunday’s turnover, he’s also fired eight interceptions over this brutal five-game stretch.
Simms, son of ex-Giant QB Phil Simms, may not be the answer, but the Jets were at a point where they had to try something. They do have two other quarterbacks in the fold: David Garrard and Mark Sanchez. Garrard was inactive for Sunday’s game, while Sanchez currently sits on IR, though he has been designated to return.
Undrafted out of Tennessee, Simms had 13 passes and seven completions to his credit in the NFL before Sunday, all coming this season.
Those paltry numbers did not stop the frustrated Jets faithful from clamoring for him during the first half Sunday, then cheering wildly when he entered the contest in the third quarter. Prior to Simms’ arrival against Miami, Smith was booed rather mercilessly as he misfired time and again through the air.
For all their troubles at QB, the Jets have somehow managed to stay in the playoff chase. A win Sunday would have pushed their record to 6-6, good enough to tie them for the final wild-card spot in the AFC.