Despite drastic improvements during summer practices New York Jets quarterback Geno Smith will have to settle for number two on the depth chart with Ryan Fitzpatrick ending his months long contract stalemate with the team.
Fitzpatrick took the Jets final offer Wednesday evening signing a one year $12 million guaranteed contract. While confidence was growing in Smith’s ability the Jets continued to negotiate with Fitzpatrick who took over the starting job last season from Smith after he was injured in a locker room incident during the preseason.
This makes Smith’s future uncertain after this season as the former Mountaineer signal caller is in the final year of his contract. The Jets may very well retain all quarterbacks currently on their roster which also includes rookie Christian Hackenburg and second year QB Bryce Petty. However, the signing of Fitzpatrick has put the Jets over the salary cap by approximately $9 million. Besides Fitzpatrick, who will be the clear starter this season, Smith is the only quarterback in the final year of his contract. Furthermore, and maybe somewhat troublesome, releasing Smith would free up $1.08 million in cap space.
Smith needed this year to prove himself before potentially going into free agency after the season.
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