FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- Hours after getting a rousing endorsement from the legendary Joe Namath, New York Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez threw three interceptions in Wednesday's OTA workout, drawing the ire of head coach Rex Ryan.
With rookie Geno Smith looming behind him -- for now -- and a turnover history that is causing concern, Sanchez has ample reason to worry despite what Namath may think.
After all, Namath's perspective is a bit skewed as he threw 220 interceptions to overbalance those 173 touchdowns in his own storied career. Namath led the league in interceptions four times and in touchdowns only once.
But Ryan made it clear Sanchez won't get as much slack as, well, Namath.
"Disappointing," Ryan said of Sanchez's performance. "Yeah, it is. Absolutely. It's a good thing defense makes the plays, but no, I'd rather him not turn the ball over once.
"He did a lot of great things, and then those negative things, at the end of the day, that's what gets you beat. And so we got to do a better job of eliminating those turnovers."
Sanchez reportedly completed 6 of 11 passes with three interceptions and one sack in 15 snaps.
However, Smith didn't capitalize on that as he looked shabby, too, completing three of 10 passes with one interception and one sack in 14 snaps.
On Tuesday Namath told the New York Daily News he was rooting for Sanchez.
"I am pulling for him," Namath said of Sanchez. "I know that he can do better than he's done. And we saw him lead a team to two AFC Championship Games, right? I also know what it's like not to necessarily have the weapons you'd like to have, not to necessarily have the time you'd like to accomplish."
However, after beginning his career with those two trips to the AFC championships, Sanchez is now on the hot seat after 52 turnovers in his past 31 games.
Namath may accept such stats, but apparently Ryan will not.
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