If there was any doubt about the Jets' immediate future at quarterback, it was erased Tuesday by Todd Bowles, who indicated that Fitzpatrick will remain the starter when Smith returns from his fractured jaw.
"Ryan is the starting quarterback right now," said the first-year coach, whose team is a surprising 2-0. "I mean, we're going good. We have good chemistry and everything else. Geno understands that. As we go, Ryan is our starting quarterback, and we'll go forward from there."
Essentially, Bowles reiterated what he said Aug. 11, the day Smith's jaw was broken by then-teammate IK Enemkpali. At the time, Bowles described it as Fitzpatrick's job to lose, saying it wouldn't make any sense to bench a hot quarterback. Six weeks later, Bowles' words carry more weight. The Jets are off to their best start since 2011, and Fitzpatrick is a big reason for the success, the story said. It also pointed out Smith hasn't been cleared yet.