NFL Nation: Mike and Mike

Joe Namath: Don't blame Mark Sanchez

December, 19, 2012
You can't have a New York Jets quarterback controversy without getting the opinion of Joe Namath. The outspoken Hall of Fame quarterback had some interesting opinions on his former team, which made a quarterback switch this week to third-stringer Greg McElroy.

Namath told ESPN's "Mike & Mike" radio show that he feels sorry for former starting quarterback Mark Sanchez. In Namath's opinion, Sanchez was never given a chance to succeed this year.

"Well, I know he's gotten a bad shake," Namath explained. "I don't think he's had the right kind of coaching. I don’t think he's had the right kind of help offensively. It is a team game. I know Mark's looked really bad these last several games and has played poorly. But I do believe he's not as bad a quarterback as he's made out to be or as he's played these last few games."

Namath went on to say that Sanchez "deserves better at this stage." Most of the national criticism has been on Sanchez for committing five turnovers in Monday's loss to the Tennessee Titans. But Namath is one of the few coming to Sanchez's defense.

Namath still believes Sanchez is a viable starting NFL quarterback. Namath just doesn't think the Jets are a viable NFL franchise.

"I think he's going to be around for a long time," Namath said. "I hope for his sake it's not with the Jets."
ESPN NFL reporter Chris Mortensen weighs in on various issues around the NFL on Monday. One of the big topics pertaining to the AFC East is the looming contract situation between the New York Jets and cornerback Darrelle Revis, who is unhappy about his salary and unsure if he's going to hold out.

Revis is scheduled to make $13.5 million over the next two years, which is considered a bargain for a player of his caliber. But Revis has been one of the NFL's highest-paid players over the first two years of the contract, which is why New York believes Revis should play out at least one more season.

Mortensen said Revis is playing like a top-five player, and the Jets will not be a contender without Revis. Those factors could mean leverage for the best cornerback in football.

"That one, he's kept everybody guessing," Mortensen said on ESPN radio's "Mike and Mike" this morning. "I'm almost surprised if he's there on Day 1."


Training camp is less than two weeks away, and Revis has done a great job of hiding his intentions. One week, his comments suggest he's holding out. The next week, Revis hints that he will not. No one knows for sure, except Revis.

But if Revis does hold out, it will be problematic for the Jets. As Mortensen mentioned, the Jets have no chance of catching the New England Patriots in the AFC East this year without Revis. He is the team's best and most important player.

The Jets have enough distractions as it is this year, starting with Tebow-mania. A third career holdout from Revis would come at an inopportune time.