Mark Sanchez was flying high after his first two NFL seasons. Three years later? Not so much.
Coming off a career-worst 2012 campaign, the New York Jets quarterback didn't play a single snap this past regular season, sitting out with a shoulder injury while watching rookie Geno Smith do just enough to seal his fate.
Despite all that, the soon-to-be sixth-year signal-caller still has a staunch supporter in his former college coach.
"Mark has everything ahead of him," Seattle Seahawks coach Pete Carroll, who led Sanchez at USC, said Tuesday, via ESPN New York. "As often happens when you get the break, when you get to take a step back and observe and analyze and assess what's going on, you come back even stronger.
". . . I think he'll be better than ever."
Sanchez may be better than ever, but it probably won't with the Jets, unless he's willing to take a massive pay cut. He's owed a $2 million bonus in March and is slated to consume upwards of $13 million in cap room in 2014. The Jets aren't going to pay him that to back up his successor, and it's possible they wouldn't have even if Smith wasn't in the picture.
There's reportedly a market for Sanchez, though a cut-and-sign is far more likely than a trade at this point.