The Jets didn't get that opportunity after Smith rolled his right ankle early in the third quarter of the preseason opener. The rookie quarterback escaped pressure, but he twisted his ankle to the inside at the tail end of a scramble.
Smith said after the Jets' 26-17 loss that his ankle is a "little sore," but he expects to play against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Aug. 17, according to the New York Daily News. The quarterback said he would've continued playing if it were a regular-season game.
While Smith's performance was nondescript, Mark Sanchez's was anything but. The incumbent starter began the game with a mind-numbing pick-six on a screen pass that landed directly in the hands of Lions rookie defensive end Ziggy Ansah.
After another screen pass was nearly picked off by Lions safety Glover Quin, Sanchez finally rallied the Jets to their first preseason touchdown since 2011. He bounced back to finish a more-than-respectable 10-of-13 passing for 125 yards with the touchdown and the interception.
"Trust me, I've been through a lot worse than that," Sanchez said of his pick-six during the broadcast, via Jane McManus of ESPNNewYork.com.
Handicapping the quarterback battle, Sanchez appeared to gain ground at Smith's expense Friday night. The veteran will have a chance to gain even more momentum if Smith's injury keeps him out for an extended period.The Around The League Podcast is now available on iTunes! Click here to listen and subscribe.