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Geno Smith implodes in first New York Jets start

The New York Jets played rookie quarterback Geno Smith into the fourth quarter of Saturday night's preseason game, hoping the second-round draft pick would take hold of the starting job. Instead, Smith might win it by default following Mark Sanchez's shoulder injury.

Starting in place of Sanchez, Smith threw three interceptions in the first half alone. He added an embarrassing safety in the fourth quarter, when he lost track of where he was, stepping out of bounds. (Yes, Geno went Full Orlovsky.)

In between the big mistakes, Smith had a few promising moments. He finished 16-of-30 passing for 199 yards and one touchdown. He made some downfield throws that Sanchez couldn't pull off and was mostly calm in the pocket. Still, Smith looked like a rookie not ready for the big stage. One interception was thrown behind a receiver, and another was picked off by New York Giants defensive lineman Justin Tuck on a zone blitz.

"Geno's been staring down his receivers all night," Giants cornerback Prince Amukamara told WNBC-TV's Bruce Beck during the game.

Smith was in the game for 12 offensive drives, which essentially is a full game. Only three of those drives gained more than 20 yards. Sanchez replaced Smith midway through the fourth quarter, fumbled the ball and later was injured after taking a huge hit.

Geno Smith didn't look ready to be a starting NFL quarterback Saturday night. But it appears the Jets might have no other choice but to play him.

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