Surgery ends Mark Sanchez's season and possibly his Jets tenure

October 8, 2013

New York Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez had season-ending surgery on his injured right throwing shoulder today.  The operation was performed by Dr. James Andrews, whom Sanchez consulted over the past weeks.

Sanchez tasted playoff success early in his career on a veteran Jets squad, but last year struggled with his consistency and confidence.

Nevertheless, Sanchez was expected to be the starter this season even though the franchise had invested a second round pick in rookie Geno Smith, but that all changed when coach Rex Ryan inexplicably inserted Sanchez late into a preseason game against the Giants with the team's second unit offense.  Sanchez subsequently was hit and injured his shoulder.

On September 14 he was placed on Injured Reserve, Designated for Return, meaning he would have been eligible to return to practice after six weeks and eligible to return to the active roster after eight weeks.   Sanchez initially tried to rehabilitate the shoulder with the goal of trying to return this season, but that approach did not succeed.

"After over seven weeks of hard work and intense rehab, I've been advised by Dr. Andrews and other doctors that my shoulder injury clearly needs to be addressed surgically," Sanchez said in a statement. "The injury was recovering at an encouraging rate early on, and I avoided surgery as long as I could, but ultimately I was counseled by the doctors that they simply would have to repair my shoulder.

"I'm very disappointed that I can't be out there to help my team on the field, but I’ll continue to help our team in whatever capacity I can. I want to thank Dr. Montgomery, Dr. Andrews, Dr. Burns and Jets trainer John Mellody for helping me through this process and advising me along the way. All doctors expect a full recovery and I look forward to getting back on the field. Until then, Go Jets!"

Meanwhile, on the field, Smith has had his ups and downs, but is making significant progress.  In his most impressive performance to date, Smith led the Jets to a 30-28 road win over the Falcons in which he led New York down the field for a last-second field goal to win the game. Smith completed 16 of his 20 passes in the game, including 3 touchdowns.

Assuming Sanchez fully recovers, the Jets still could part ways with his expensive, multi-year contract in favor of the promising Smith.

By Staff of and news services

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