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Can Bryce Petty make a move up the Jets' QB depth chart?

Reaching into the mailbag for our New York Jets question of the week:

@RichCimini: Personally, I haven't seen Bryce Petty throw a football in a competitive situation since the preseason. He was a scout-team quarterback during the season and, as you probably know, practices are closed to the media. From what I've been told, Petty did a nice job in his small role, displaying intelligence, work ethic and a reasonably strong arm. In a perfect world, as general manager Mike Maccagnan likes to say, Petty would have a strong offseason, play lights-out in the preseason and convince everyone he's ready for the No. 2 job. Is he the quarterback of the future? That's what everyone wants to know. The answer is, it's too early to tell.

Speaking on a conference call with season-ticket holders this week, Maccagnan offered some insight on Petty and his future.

"We feel, ability-wise, he can definitely be a quality No. 2 (quarterback)," he said. "The rest is kind of up to him. He has the physical ability to potentially be a starting-caliber quarterback, but he still has to do it on the field and in the preseason, so we can kind of see where he's at. We're excited to work with him."

As you can tell by this quote, Petty has a lot of work ahead of him. He's not a sure thing and he won't be handed anything. He's still making the transition from Baylor’s no-huddle, spread offense to a pro-style system. Maccagnan acknowledged they saw him as a "project" when they drafted him in the fourth round. They're bringing him along slowly, giving him a chance to develop without the pressure of being The Guy. If Geno Smith had that luxury, who knows how it would've turned out?

Ryan Fitzpatrick will be the starter in 2016, if he returns. I think Petty will get a chance to be the No. 2, battling Smith -- if Smith makes it to training camp, that is.