Vick: Geno Smith is Jets' starter

Updated: May 4, 2014, 11:44 AM ET
ESPN.com news services

Michael Vick says that Geno Smith is the New York Jets' starting quarterback, the latest twist in what has become the team's biggest offseason storyline.

Vick, who signed with the Jets in March, briefly touched on the Jets' quarterback situation during an interview Saturday with NJ.com, acknowledging that Smith is the starter.

VickGeno's the starting quarterback for that football team. Ultimately our goal is to try to help Geno become the best quarterback that he can be. Myself and (Matt Simms) are all trying to put him in a position where he can get better from year one to year two.

-- Michael Vick, to NJ.com

"Geno's the starting quarterback for that football team," Vick said. "Ultimately our goal is to try to help Geno become the best quarterback that he can be.

"Myself and [Matt Simms] are all trying to put him in a position where he can get better from Year 1 to Year 2."

When he signed with the Jets in March, Vick said "as of now" Smith was the Jets' starter and although he still wants to start, his ultimate job was to help Smith improve. 

"I wouldn't say I'd necessarily be OK with sitting on the bench, but I know what I signed up for," Vick said at the time of his signing, describing Smith as a good friend. "I know what I came to New York to do. First and foremost, I came to compete and be there for Geno. I know he has a long way to go, but we both talked and we both agree we're going to push one another and make each other better."

Despite those comments, many in the media have speculated it's a foregone conclusion that Vick will eventually be named the starter.

Vick's latest assertion, however, aligns with comments made this past week by Jets offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg, who did not name a starter but did announce that Smith would see the majority of the first-team reps when New York begins its OTA practices in a few weeks.

Smith threw 21 interceptions last season as a rookie but showed signs of improvement down the stretch, helping the Jets win their final two games en route to an 8-8 finish.

Smith said last month that he is confident he'll remain the starter, although Jets coach Rex Ryan said earlier this offseason that New York signed Vick in order to "push" the second-year quarterback.

Vick, who turns 34 next month, has four years of background in Mornhinweg's system thanks to their time together with the Philadelphia Eagles, which could give the veteran an edge in a potential competition with Smith.

But Mornhinweg stated last week that Vick's familiarity with the offense will help Smith's development, saying that the process will "work beautifully."

Vick signed a one-year, $4 million deal with New York after the Jets cut Mark Sanchez. The four-time Pro Bowler appeared in just seven games last season with the Eagles and has been plagued by injuries since returning to the NFL in 2009.

ESPN.com Jets reporter Rich Cimini contributed to this report.

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