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Jets OC: Sanchez has earned Friday's start

CORTLAND, NY – Jets offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg gave another characteristically upbeat assessment of the offense today from the press box at SUNY Cortland. He had some pretty supportive comments for quarterback Mark Sanchez, picked to start Friday in Detroit, and noted that Geno Smith has "dipped" recently during camp.

Smith and Sanchez are vying for the starting quarterback job, and the Jets want to pick a starter by Week 3 of the preseason. So how did Sanchez get the start?

“He’s earned it. He’s had an outstanding training camp, so that’s the first thing. The second thing is, he’s been the starter here. The first game would typically be his, but he’s earned it as well, so those two things kind of go together.”

Mornhinweg noted that Smith had played well earlier but has lagged in recent practices.

“He’s got to power through it, it’s just that simple,” Mornhinweg said. “There’s an awful lot of installations. I believe we’re through number 10 right now and if you add it all up, it’s quite extensive. So, he’s done an outstanding job up to date and he was a little bit better today than he was yesterday, so I think he’s back on the rise.”

And here he is on Smith’s upside: “He’s certainly ultra-talented,” Mornhinweg said. “He’s done an excellent job up to date with his preparation, on the field, and the production on the field. He’s done an excellent job that way. Quite a little bit more dynamic that way. “

Mornhinweg noted that Sanchez’s is having a better camp this year than in recent years:

“His numbers are up just a little bit,” Mornhinweg said, “as far as his accuracy and his completion percentage throughout the camp from past history, at least the recent past history from the numbers that I have."

QUICK HITS: Mornhinweg called Greg McElroy “a gamer” and said that he and Matt Simms are in a compelling fight for the third QB spot... . Will WR Santonio Holmes be ready for Week 1? Mornhinweg says it’s “Too early to tell.” ... Mornhinweg is up of WR Ryan Spadola, “He’s got a real chance.”