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Mark Sanchez's Last Stand?

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Could Thursday be the final game of the Sanchez Era?

Dilip Vishwanat

Ignoring all of the talk from Florham Park about the quarterback situation, there is ample reason to believe Mark Sanchez might be playing for his job Thursday night against the Patriots.

Anything other than an excellent performance by Sanchez will likely result in a season-destroying loss. The Sanchez we saw against the Rams and Colts, the one doing no harm and making a few easy passes is probably not going to be enough against New England, even if the Pats do not have Rob Gronkowski.

There is every reason for Sanchez to have a big game. Even though the Pats' secondary came to life against the Colts last week, they have been vulnerable to big plays all year. Despite struggles at certain points in the game and some costly errors, Sanchez himself lit the group up in the first meeting.

This creates a perfect storm. If Sanchez doesn't play well, the season is over. If he doesn't play well against this group, who will be play well against?

There is another factor in all of this. Tim Tebow will get the nod if the Jets make a change. The Jets will need to invent a new offense based upon the option if Tebow is inserted. Tebow can run. He cannot throw effectively. There will be no better time the rest of the way to make a switch. The Jets will get three extra days to make preparations due to the Thursday game.

And as we know, Tebow is the last thing this team can do to generate positive interest once the season is lost.

Rex Ryan and the organization say Sanchez is safe. Maybe he is, but this is not an organization with a record of being honest about its plans. Watch out. There's plenty to suggest a change could be in the works.

What's the only way we can spare ourselves? Sanchez needs to go out and play extremely well.