Then they gave Sanchez a five-year, $58.25 million extension that ensures he will be the starter for at least the next two seasons. Will that hurt New York's chances of getting a quality backup when free agency opens Tuesday?
Solid No. 2 quarterback options like Chad Henne and others might look the other way now when it comes to the Jets. Sanchez, before the extension, entered the season on the hot seat. But New York's commitment sends a clear message that the Jets are all-in with the fourth-year quarterback. Injury is pretty much the only way Sanchez isn't starting.
The Jets have a connection with Henne in new offensive coordinator Tony Sparano, most recently the Dolphins' head coach. But Henne will have options, which the AFC East blog listed here. The same goes for Jason Campbell, Kyle Orton or any other veteran starter looking to challenge for a starting job.
It could be tough for New York to find a middle ground. The Jets don't want another Mark Brunell situation in 2012. But finding a quality backup like Henne just got tougher with Sanchez so firmly in the fold.