Geno Smith. We love him. We hate him. He brings hope. He brings despair.
While there are many different views on Geno, everyone generally falls in to one of three opinions: He is the future, he is not the future, or we need to give him time to develop. Unfortunately the only definite wrong answer to that question at this point in time is that we need to give him time to develop. The fact is Geno was a low risk gamble. If he was a high first rounder (like Sanchez at 5th overall) the commitment would be much greater to try everything possible to make him starter material.
Being a second round pick, though a little high, is not an unreasonable spot to look specifically for a backup quarterback. There have been plenty of backup QBs picked in earlier rounds. Charlie Whitehurst (3rd), Brock Osweiler (2nd), and Ryan Mallet (3rd) are all current backups picked to be just that. Two of those are for elite teams (Patriots and Broncos). Even the Jets picked up Kellen Clemons in the 2nd round to back up Pennington. In a world where one hit can wreck a team (see Green Bay, Tennessee, Chicago) it's not a bad idea to invest in a backup.
Geno's window to prove that he is the future is quickly closing. If he can't prove that in the next six games, I expect the Jets to move on but keep him as a backup.
We are a team building for the future under new GM John Idzik. Though it is still too early to tell, the general vibe is that he tends to lean more towards the Best Player Available approach. Trading up or reaching for players in the draft is not going to be a likely occurrence. Personally, I am a huge fan of that philosophy as it tends to lend itself to more sustainable long term success. We passed over Geno not just once but twice. Unless the front office had some extremely good intel, they would have had to assume he wouldn't be there by the next pick. But he fell out of the top 10, he fell out of the first round, and still lasted until the Jets came on the board in the 2nd round.
He wasn't picked as our next franchise player. He was picked because he was the best player available on Idzik's board at that spot. Fortune smiled on him with the Sanchez injury and he was able to start. This was far from a coronation, and his fate could hardly be linked to Idzik or Rex at this point.
If the Jets invest multiple years in trying to make him the starter, they will essentially signify he was intended to be the future and both our GM and Head Coach will tie their fates to him. If they approach it that he was intended as a backup who got a lucky opportunity to start this year, they will save face in the media and have the chance to roll the dice on another QB pick.
Could he possibly turn everything around and become the future top tier quarterback we all pray to the football gods on a nightly basis for? Possibly.
If one of the currently viewed "elite" prospects falls to the middle of the first round where we will likely pick, will Idzik pull the trigger and make Geno and the rookie compete for the starting role? Most definitely.