"I feel, right now, that this is the right move," Ryan said.
Smith's benching comes one day after the second-year passer threw three interceptions in a span of six plays during the first quarter of Sunday's embarrassing43-23 home loss to the Buffalo Bills. Vick replaced Smith and provided a temporary spark, though the vet finished with threeturnoversof his own.
According to the Elias Sports Bureau, it was the first time a team had two quarterbacks with three or more turnovers in a single game since the 1991 Cardinals.
Smith can't say he didn't get a fair shake here. The former second-round pick has gone 9-15 as a starter with 19 touchdowns, 31 interceptions, a 55.9 percent completion rating and passer rating of 66.2. He's had at least two turnovers in half of his starts.
Still, NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport said that he would be "surprised" if Smith doesn't get another start this season, mainly because the team wants to give the young passer "every single opportunity to prove he is their guy."
"This is not looking long-term, this is about the immediate," Ryan said. "My focus is just on that and that's on Kansas City and trying to find a way to get a win. And that's why this decision was made."
Ryan called Monday's move to go to Vick a "team decision." It's hard to imagine there being too much internal fight on Smith's behalf. The Jets have lost seven straight and the quarterback was flailing. Something had to give.