Here come the rookies. Mark Sanchez & Co. took to the field for their first official practice this morning. The offense looked particularly sharp, which surprised everyone given that they had held only one meeting with the coaches. Turns out that when the offense got their playbooks to study last night, the new quarterback corralled the players into an impromptu meeting and led the group in installing everything themselves. And...that's the kind of leadership you want from your new franchise quarterback.
As for Sanchez himself, he looked both relaxed and in command. His throws were sharp and his self-confidence was apparent. There was no question he was the leader on the field. Even when facing the throng of media - and I do mean throng, there appeared to be as many members of the media as there were players on the field - he looked completely comfortable.
Ironically, this guy is still a college student. He takes his last final next week (in Argumentation and Advocacy). I asked Sanchez when the last time he studied was and he told me on the plane out here. He promised to show me his report card. Rex Ryan merrily shared that he thinks he'll get a 'D'.
The other two draft picks made nice showings as well. Shonn Greene can move. He's fast and his cuts look sharp. He may give Thomas Jones a run for his money. Slauson got lost in the shuffle a bit, but I spoke to him and he's your typical O-lineman, very smart, very nice with a good sense of humor.
As for today's Rex Ryan Show, he said that while there is a quarterback competition between Kellen Clemens and Sanchez, he definitely has an idea of who he wants and thinks it's going to turn out. But "the guy has to earn the job." He didn't tell us which guy. I think you can guess. He also stated in a complete matter-of-fact tone that Erik Ainge is the third quarterback and it would be hard for him to be a real part of the competition simply because he won't get the same amount of reps as Sanchez and Kellen Clemens. How's THAT for candid?