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Baldinger: Geno Smith's conditioning 'embarrassing'

NFL Network analyst Brian Baldinger watched Geno Smith at New York Jets practice this weekend and came away impressed. Well, mostly impressed.

"He looked good to me yesterday until he ran gassers at the end of practice," said Baldinger, who attended Jets training camp in Cortland, N.Y., on Sunday. "And Geno Smith looked like he had done no conditioning. It was actually embarrassing to see how far behind he (Mark) Sanchez and (Matt) Simms and everybody else that's there."

The rookie quarterback was more impressive during the parts of practice that count most.

Added Baldy on Monday's "Inside Training Camp": "However, he did look good getting in and out of the huddle, getting to the line of scrimmage, getting the ball out of his hands quickly."

Baldinger's comments provide a reminder of how much scrutiny Smith faces as he attempts to win a starting job in his first NFL training camp. NFL Network analyst Heath Evans was in Cortland on Monday, pointing out the difference in arm strength between Sanchez and Smith.

"You see a lot of accuracy, a lot of zip on the ball obviously from Geno," Evans observed. "You see some balls sailing, or what I would say floating, for Mark Sanchez."

It's early, but it feels like we're seeing early signs of a tide turning Smith's way in this competition. Rex Ryan praised Smith for playing mistake-free football in team drills. Antonio Cromartie is praising Smith's ability to pick up the offense.

Sanchez needs to show himself to be a superior candidate, and we don't have any evidence he's done that yet. Starting jobs aren't won in gasser races.

Follow Dan Hanzus on Twitter @DanHanzus.

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