Newly signed Jets quarterback Michael Vick is more than a decade older than Geno Smith, the team's incumbent starter. Despite his advanced age, however, Vick is still more than talented enough to put some pressure on young Geno for his job.
Given the age disparity between the two, it makes more sense for the Jets to look at Smith as the long-term future at the position, at least on the surface. Smith should be considered the early leader for the starting job when the team convenes following the offseason, given his possible long-term value.
However, Smith wasn't just bad as a rookie; he was historically awful, finishing with the second-lowest passer rating in league history for a rookie quarterback who started all 16 games. Only David Carr was worse.
All of this is to say that, while the Jets are framing Vick's signing as an opportunity to push Smith with veteran competition, there is no reason to think he has the job in the bag. As a second-round pick making less than $1 million in base salary next season, the Jets are hardly pot-committed to the second-year pro. They managed to go 8-8 with Smith's flailing for 16 games, but they won largely in spite of the rookie, who finished with 12 touchdowns and 21 interceptions in the passing game.
Vick isn't the dynamic, world-class athlete he was in his prime, but he still averaged 17.8 Fantasy points per game in six starts for the Eagles a year ago. That, despite leaving multiple games with injuries. Vick could fit in well for the Jets, who asked Smith to rush the ball 72 times last season, the seventh-highest total for any quarterback.
Vick is going to push Smith for playing time, and might just win the starting job out of camp for team that could sniff the playoffs with competent quarterbacking play. He will be someone to keep an eye on for Fantasy purposes this summer, making this a rare intriguing free agency move this late in the process.
Oh, before I forget: the Jets also dropped Mark Sanchez to make room for Vick. Let's all take a moment to reflect on the legacy of one of the most ineffective Fantasy quarterbacks of all time, owner of a robust 13.7 Fantasy points per game average over 62 career starts.
I'll never forget you, Buttfumble.