Greg McElroy, the third-string quarterback for the New York Jets, took over for a struggling Mark Sanchez and guided the Jets to a 7-6 victory over the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday.
While Sanchez was benched after going 10-of-21 passing for 97 yards and three interceptions, McElroy was 5-of-7 for 29 yards and a touchdown. Tim Tebow was not active for the game. McElroy, a 7th round pick out of Alabama for the Jets in 2011, had not thrown a pass in an NFL regular season game before Sunday.
SB Nation's Jets blog, Gang Green Nation, had this to say about McElroy:
It is going to be easy to overreact to Greg McElroy's performance today. Nobody can say what it means. I remember Brooks Bollinger coming off the bench to give this team a much bigger spark in a game against San Diego in 2005 only to throw five interceptions the next week in Charlotte. McElroy was a vast improvement over Sanchez in that he didn't do anything dumb with the ball. McElroy did a few things to beat a bad team. Let's not make this more than it is.
But it seemed clear to me that the Jets played with more intensity on both sides of the ball once McElroy started warming up. Maybe it was because the players finally saw that you can be benched for bad play, and it lit a fire under them. Maybe it was because these players do not believe in Mark Sanchez and were fired up that they had a quarterback who would not give the game away. Only time will tell this and how much of a solution McElroy is. It was a long overdue move that was probably too little, too late, but it is good to see this team finally make the right move. So much for that whole Sanchez gives the team the best chance to win thing.
One thing that is not an overreaction is the fact that the Jets are now 5-7 this season. With the Colts and Steelers both winning on Sunday, the Jets could not afford to drop another game if they are going to get back into the AFC Wild Card hunt.