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Personnel director: Jets have 'high hopes' for Christian Hackenberg

You already know how Mike Maccagnan, Todd Bowles and Chan Gailey feel about Christian Hackenberg. Each one has talked publicly about the team's second-round pick and potential quarterback of the future. Do you want to hear from another voice in the New York Jets' organization?

Well, here you go.

"I think we have high hopes for Hack," director of player personnel Brian Heimerdinger said Thursday on Nashville radio station 1045 The Zone. "He had a tough time in college, but he's an unbelievable kid. He's real smart. I've really enjoyed him so far since he's been in the building. We'll see how he progresses over the next couple of years."

Heimerdinger, who usually doesn't partake in media interviews, spoke to the radio station to promote "Drive 4 Dinger," a celebrity golf tournament named after his late father, Mike Heimerdinger. His dad was a longtime NFL offensive coordinator, whose career included eight seasons with the Tennessee Titans and one with the Jets (2005). The tournament raises money for the Heimerdinger Foundation, which provides food for cancer patients in the Nashville area.

Naturally, Heimerdinger was asked about the Jets' quarterback situation. He said drafting Hackenberg doesn't mean Bryce Petty has slipped in the eyes of the organization.

"Personally, our opinion is you don't draft on what your roster is," he said. "We like to fill our needs in free agency and draft the best available. In regard to Bryce, that's not really a slight at Bryce anymore than drafting a linebacker is a slight at David Harris in that regard."

He was referring to first-round pick Darron Lee.

Asked about the Ryan Fitzpatrick stalemate, Heimerdinger gave the company line.

"You hope to find some middle ground somewhere," he said. "I think we've said all along as an organization that we want him back. I don't think that's changed at all. We'll see how it plays out over the next couple of months. We're hoping to get him back in."