Smith and read-option – is that a good idea?

Content available exclusively for subscribers

Please subscribe now to unlock this article!

Rex was asked about Geno running the read-option, and bringing a scrambling element to the Jets’ offense with his speed.

Is this a good idea?

No, Smith and the read-option is a really bad idea.

Rex Ryan was asked about Smith and the read-option (a QB scrambling play that San Francisco had success with last season), and here is part of what he had to say –

“I think he’s got the athleticism to do that. You’re exactly right that (West Virginia) really didn’t run a whole lot of zone reads and different things, but he has the skill set where there’s no reason he shouldn’t be able to do that

We’ll let this thing work out and pan out and we’ll see. I know exactly what you’re saying. In San Francisco, we never knew a whole lot about (Colin) Kaepernick and then when he came in there they started springing that stuff on you and that’s like, ‘Oh, ok.’ He made some huge runs in that game against us. So, we’ll see. I know we’re looking at it, you have to be ready for it. It’s something that’s here and I’m not sure it’s going away.”

I can’t begin to tell you what a bad idea this is.

In Rex’s defense, he didn’t bring this up on his own, he was asked about it, but he didn’t exactly shoot it down.

Perhaps he wants opponents to think about it when they prepare for the Jets.

But this idea is a disaster waiting to happen.

True, Smith ran a a 4.56 forty at the combine, which is an excellent time for the quarterback position.

But the way he’s built, a little on the skinny side right now, at about 6-2.5 and 218 pounds, it’s a bad idea to expose this guy to open field hits.

He came to the Jets in dire need of a strength program. To be honest, it doesn’t look like he spent a lot of time in the weight room in college. He has very little muscle definition.

Remember, who excelled at the read-option last year is a powerfully built guy – Kaepernick is 6-4, 235 pounds, and has two years of NFL strength training.

Smith needs a lot of work in the weight room.

He needs to be attached at the hip with Jets strength coach Justus Galac.

Aside from not being built to withstand the punishment of running the read-option, there is another issue here – Smith’s not a great scrambler.

He has good straight-line speed. Remember, that 4.56 forty was obviously run going straight. Smith isn’t considered an elusive scrambler.

Running fast doesn’t make you elusive.

For instance, Jeremy Kerley didn’t run a good forty coming out of Texas Christian, but he’s amazingly elusive. Being elusive isn’t necessarily about great speed, it’s more about lateral quickness and lose hips.

This Smith/read-option story was all over the internet on Wednesday.

This happens all the time.

Manish Mehta is a master at it. He asks a provocative question, Rex or another coach doesn’t shoot it down, and then it turns into a national story – “Jets to run read-option.”

Remember, this happened when Manish asked Marty Mornhinweg if he’d like to name a starting quarterback by mid-June (when minicamp wrapped up). Mornhinweg didn’t shoot it down, and this became a national story – “Mornhinweg would like to pick a quarterback by mid-June.”

Manish is amazing at providing his newspaper publicity and getting hits on their website – he knows how to create news and generate a buzz. This is why his boss loves him, and he was recently promoted.

Rex, who needs media training (this isn’t a shot at him – I think I’m doing him a favor with this suggestion – this is a vicious media market and you have to know how to navigate it), falls for the bait too often.

I will give Rex credit for saying late in his first answer regarding Smith bringing a running option, that there is a risk factor.

“You have to be smart in what you ask your quarterbacks to do or are you going to need to have a whole bunch of them,” Ryan said.

When you guys see Smith in training camp, and in the preseason, you will totally understand what I’m talking about – this guy is a rail – you want him running as little as possible at this stage of the game.

June 16, 2013

Premium will return by 9:30 pm on Monday

Dan Leberfeld
Dan Leberfeld
Publisher of Jets Confidential Magazine. Call 1-800-932-4557 (M-F, 12-4) to subscribe. Co-host of Press Coverage every Saturday on SiriusXM NFL Radio from 11-2.

Stay in the Loop

Get the daily email from CryptoNews that makes reading the news actually enjoyable. Join our mailing list to stay in the loop to stay informed, for free.

Latest stories

- Advertisement - spot_img

You might also like...