Seahawks’ Geno Smith says it’s “business as usual” ahead of Jets game

Seahawks’ Geno Smith says it’s “business as usual” ahead of Jets game

RENTON, Washington — Gene Smith He will face the team that drafted him when it is his Seattle Seahawks host New York Jets on Sunday at Lumen Field, but the Pro Bowl quarterback didn’t give any impression that he considers it a so-called revenge game.

More to be gained.

Smith was asked during his weekly media session Thursday if there was anything special about the game given his history with the Jets.

“It’s nothing to me,” Smith said. “I really feel like we need to win the importance of that to get into the playoffs. Obviously there’s going to be some speculation, they’re going to talk about it. It comes with the territory. It’s to be expected. I’ve got a lot of love for the Jets, the organization and still there it was for a lot of people, when I got the relay. So for me and this team, it’s normal, another week to prepare and a tough challenge for us. to go out and try to get this win. We need it.”

Smith spoke fondly of his four seasons with the Jets, a 12-18 record as a starter and a nasty locker room brawl that cost him his starting job, a surprising tenure. Smith, a second-round pick in 2013, was entering his third season in the summer of 2015 when teammate IK Enemkpali punched him, leaving him with a broken jaw. By the time Smith returned late in the season, Ryan Fitzpatrick He was having a career year that would keep him in the starting spot for much of the 2016 campaign.

Smith wouldn’t become a full-time starter until he won again Drew Lock in the competition to replace him this offseason Russell Wilson. He was asked how he didn’t become bitter after losing his first job in New York.

“I think it was a wonderful time for me to grow and become even more of a selfless person,” she said. “Obviously, we have our goals, and the way things happened wasn’t in my plans or what I thought would happen, but it happened, so you take the approach that you can’t cry over spilled milk. A great teammate for the guys around me, that doesn’t bother me. Helping them succeed in any way I can. That became my career for a while, not only being a great teammate, but trying to help guys get better and do everything. Outside of playing, it took helping the team win.”

Backing up Fitzpatrick gave Smith time to think, he said.

“It was probably the first time since I was 10 that I didn’t play or start,” he said. “I was playing football for a long time, I started many seasons, and then, boom, now something happens where you have to sit. It was different, it was a challenge, but it taught me a lot and helped me grow. .”

Smith threw 25 touchdowns in his first two seasons while committing 41 combined turnovers, third in the NFL during that span. But between his career day in the 2014 Finals and a strong showing in the 2015 preseason, Smith felt he was ready to make a leap before a broken jaw dashed those hopes.

“I felt really good about where I was and I thought I was taking the next step, and I stuck with that thought process throughout my career,” he said. “You’re right, I was very emotional. It’s obviously a freak accident, things happen and you don’t wish that on anyone. But it was a huge learning moment for me, but also for building resilience and patience. a lot of patience. It took a lot of work, though and to be able to compete again as a starter after everything that happened. I was grateful for everything that I went through, and obviously I was able to turn it around and be positive.”

Seahawks coach Pete Carroll, perhaps trying to absorb some of the scrutiny Smith will face this week, brought up the unceremonious end to his tenure with the Jets when asked about his conversations with Smith about dealing with his former team. Carroll was fired in 1994 after going 6-10 as the Jets’ coach.

“Really, we’re going as partners in crime because we were both there and it didn’t work out so well in the end,” Carroll said. “So we’re sharing some experience.”

The Seahawks have lost five of their last six games after a 6-3 start and now sit one game out of the NFC wild-card seed. ESPN’s Football Power Index gives them a 27.4% chance to claim one of the available wild cards. A loss to the Jets wouldn’t necessarily knock them out of playoff contention, but aside from a win over the Rams in Week 18, they would need several things to advance.

Smith ranks fifth in Total QBR with 63.4 points, nearly 20 points higher than his mark in his first nine seasons. But his production has dipped lately, with just two touchdowns in the past two games and five interceptions in as many weeks. That stretch has coincided with a decline in Seattle’s running game.

Asked about his assessment of Smith’s game in recent weeks, Carroll said the signal-caller could be “cleaner” with some of his mechanics.

“We can get a little bit cleaner on things and it’s really just technical things that I think can make a difference,” he said. “You’re always going to hear me say we’ve got to play better around him to help him in every way. But he knows he can clean some things up. We’re being very, very strict about it, and he’s really working on it. He’s trying to make sure he gives himself the best opportunity to perform at a very high level. Some plays there’s been little things here and there, little things in the shoes and things like that, that we’re talking about. It’s really small. things, but it can still have an impact.”

Smith will become an unrestricted free agent when his one-year, $3.5 million contract expires in March. He also has an additional $3.5 million in incentives and would likely earn all of that if Seattle makes the playoffs.

Smith was asked if he has thought about his future beyond this season.

“My future will be great,” he said. “I’m always thinking about that… I’m always thinking positively. But my future is right now, today, going out there to have a great practice and get ready for Sunday.”

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