If Mark Sanchez gets to the Super Bowl, it will set back offensive football by 70 years.
If Sanchez topples Peyton Manning’s team with one of his patented 100-yard games, it will only add to the debilitating effect. It’s the equivalent of a drunk, unkempt Danny DeVito beating out George Clooney for a date with a supermodel.
After Sanchize drew mad praise for a 17-14 playoff win in which he threw for exactly 100 yards and recorded a 60.1 passer rating, the truth still largely remains untold. Here it is: Sanchez makes Trent Dilfer in 2000 look like Dan Marino.
At least the much-abused Dilfer of the Ravens’ Super Bowl team pulled off one game-changing bomb a game. Dilfer completed one pass of more than 40 yards in all four of Baltimore’s playoff wins, including that 34-7 rout of the Giants in Super Bowl XXXV. Heck, Dilfer even threw a 96-yard touchdown pass on third-and-18 in the AFC championship.
Sanchez might not throw for 96 yards total in this Sunday’s AFC championship. If he follows the no-mistake game plan that would still be considered a success.
None of this means the Jets should apologize for their date with Indy. It should, though, stop headline writers, columnists and TV talking heads from declaring Boy Wonder led the Jets to a divisional playoff win.
Shonn Greene, Darrelle Revis, Rex Ryan, Kerry Rhodes, Bart Scott, Alan Faneca and Nick Mangold, the Jets voodoo expert who curses every opposing field goal kicker should all be mentioned before Sanchez.
The brilliance of this Jets run is that Ryan’s managed to make the most marquee position in all sports the most insignificant on his own team. Yet, the media is utterly incapable of accepting this.
So every game brings columns on Sanchez’s unprecedented success, features on his elementary signal calls and in-depth interviews chronicling his leadership in a huddle of 10 other guys who all do more than him. He gets praised every time he doesn’t trip.
Sanchez even pokes fun at his role, noting he gave “a heck of a handoff” on Greene’s 53-yard touchdown burst that put the Jets up by two scores on Sunday. Delivered with that smug smile, though, it mostly comes across as a press-savvy athlete saying what he thinks he should say.
Sanchez clearly buys — and loves — his faulty hype. It’s the media that should know better. Are we really still that ignorant and blindly quarterback obsessed in 2010?
– Chris Baldwin covers the sports media for Metro.
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