FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- From Broadway Joe to Broadway Geno.
Shortly after being selected by the New York Jets with the 39th pick in the second round of the 2013 NFL draft on Friday night, West Virginia's Geno Smith confidently told NFL Network, "We’re going to the playoffs next year."
Asked by reporters at the team’s practice facility if he was sticking by that comment via conference call, Smith replied, "I am. I mean, even if I wasn’t on the team, I think they have a really good team, and the fact that speaking with Rex [Ryan] and Mr. [John] Idzik and the direction that they’re going, they’re headed in the right direction."
That’s going to be a daunting challenge, however, given that the Jets are a team in transition, and just traded their franchise player, Darrelle Revis, to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. They also lost 11 starters from their 2012 squad that went 6-10.
What about the Super Bowl?
"That’s a tough one," Smith replied with a laugh, not making a Ryan-like guarantee. "We’ll see."
Smith, 22, was a three-year starter for the Mountaineers. Last season, he threw 42 touchdowns and just six interceptions.
"I’m ready to compete. I’m ready to go in there and try to win the starting job," Smith told NFL Network.
Sources told ESPN’s Adam Schefter that the Jets will consider releasing Sanchez.
Smith hasn’t heard anything about trying to win the starting job yet, and added that he’ll accept his role, whatever it may be.
"The only thing they guaranteed me was that I’m going to be a Jet," Smith said.
Smith believes he can be a franchise QB.
"The main thing is I’m going to come in and work and compete, and also I’m going to do my best to better my teammates in order for us to win," he said.
Will he use not being picked in the first round as motivation?
"It’s not on my mind," Smith said. "I’m just excited to be living out my dream right now. I understand there’s a lot of work to be done. If it needs to be used as motivation, it will be."