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Geno Smith will be New York Jets' starting quarterback

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The New York Jets announced Wednesday that rookie Geno Smith will start the team's season opener against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday.

The decision caps an offseason-long competition that pitted Smith against four-year starter Mark Sanchez. Neither quarterback made a strong case for the job, but Sanchez remains "day to day" with a right shoulder injury that reportedly might keep the veteran sidelined until at least Week 3 against the Buffalo Bills.

Sanchez's health aside, the Jets -- or at least some Jets officials -- were rumored to be leaning toward Smith for some time. Sanchez has his supporters, too, but new general manager John Idzik drafted Smith out of West Virginia to revive a Jets offense that flat-lined with Sanchez at the wheel last season.

It's interesting how the Jets announced the move, anointing Smith quietly through online channels. It caps a difficult summer for Sanchez, but the Jets are overdue to turn the page. Besides, it's fair to wonder if Sanchez even would have a place on the roster were it not for the $8.25 million guaranteed he's due this season. Beyond the financials, starting Smith just makes sense for the Jets.

You don't draft rookie signal-callers to sit anymore, especially on teams lacking a veteran quarterback you can trust. Geno will be thrust into the fire, putting an end -- for now -- to the drama in New York. Meanwhile, it's fair to wonder if Sanchez will start again in green and white. Knowing the Jets, anything is possible.

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