AFC East Notes: Smith, Ryan, Pats, Pegula

The Jets have opened the 2014 season with a 1-4 record, a disaster at the quarterback position, and a dearth of optimism for an imminent reversal of fortunes. The two starring figures in the team’s disappointment, of course, are head coach Rex Ryan and second-year quarterback Geno Smith. However, as Conor Orr of writes, the ultimate fate of those two men could be quite different if and when their respective tenures with the Jets are over.

Citing NFL Media’s Michael Robinson, Orr writes that “a defensively starved team would absolutely pay Ryan handsomely to return to his former role as a coordinator,” but teams would be much more hesitant to give Smith another shot. Orr adds that, unless Smith shows more comfort against top-tier defenses, it is difficult to imagine any sort of market developing for him, even among coaches with strong backgrounds in quarterback development.

Now for some more notes from around the AFC East:

  • Ian Rapoport of tweets that, despite the Jets‘ woes, a midseason firing of Rex Ryan or GM John Idzik is highly unlikely and that owner Woody Johnson will reevaluate his personnel after the season. Rapoport adds (via Twitter) that there is no “litmus test” for Ryan to keep his job, as the team could finish the 2014 season strong and opt to bring Ryan back. After all, the Jets worried after the 2013 season that he would be immediately rehired as a head coach elsewhere and make them pay, and that fear still exists among the team’s front office.
  • With the Broncos coming to town this week, Rich Cimini of takes a look back at the Jets-Broncos trade that brought Tim Tebow to the Meadowlands. Although the fourth-round pick that New York shipped to Denver turned out to be center Phillip Blake, who is now out of the league, the Broncos used the sixth-rounder on Danny Trevathan, their starting weakside linebacker: Advantage: Denver.
  • Ben Volin of the Boston Globe writes that, although the proliferation of doomsday articles concerning the Patriots‘ dynasty–which quickly disappeared after the team’s performance against the Bengals last week–contemplated a premature end to Tom Brady‘s days in New England, Brady’s contract suggests that he will remain under center for at least the 2015 season.
  • Despite the Patriots‘ throwback blowout of the Bengals last Sunday, Jay Skurski of the Buffalo News is unimpressed by the team’s long-term prospects and believes the dynasty is indeed fading.
  • Jerry Sullivan of the Buffalo News discusses the “eerie” coincidences surrounding new Bills‘ owner Terry Pegula‘s purchase of the team, and Sullivan wonders if the symbolism will continue with a Buffalo upset of New England later today.
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