Geno Smith benched after 3 INTs

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- New York Jets quarterback Geno Smith has started every game in his young NFL career -- all 24. But that could change this week.

Smith threw three interceptions in the first quarter Sunday and was pulled from the Jets' 43-23 loss to the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium. He said his performance was "just atrocious."

Jets coach Rex Ryan left open the possibility of making Michael Vick his new starter.

"I have no idea," Ryan said. "We'll look at that later."

Smith may have injured his right shoulder while diving to make a tackle on the third interception and was taken for an X-ray after the game. The team didn't disclose the results, and Smith declined to comment on the injury.

Ryan has been fiercely loyal to Smith through his growing pains (31 interceptions in 24 starts), but his patience could be waning as the Jets (1-7) dropped their seventh straight game Sunday.

"I would love to start. ... Coach hasn't told me anything. The only thing I can do is just keep preparing myself to play."
Jets quarterback Michael Vick

"He just seemed off," Ryan said. "He was zipping the ball all week. I was really impressed and encouraged by him. He was misfiring (on Sunday). It was disappointing."

Smith compiled the dreaded 0.0 passer rating Sunday. He completed more passes to the Bills than his own players, finishing 2-for-8 for five yards. He became the first quarterback to finish with two or fewer completions and three or more interceptions since Rex Grossman of the Chicago Bears in 2006.

The Jets finished with six turnovers, including three by Vick -- one interception and two fumbles.

"We did a lot of good things with Mike in there," Ryan said.

This marked the third time that Ryan has benched Smith in a game for ineffectiveness. The previous time was in Week 5, a 31-0 loss to the San Diego Chargers. After that game, Ryan gave Smith a vote of confidence, saying he had no intention of changing quarterbacks.

"I think the young man has the ability," Ryan said. "I do. I believe he has the ability. He has some mental toughness. It's just a matter of time. ... I think he's going to be a really good quarterback in this league."

Smith's support in the locker room could be waning, as several players gave non-answers when asked if they still believe in the second-year quarterback.

Smith lasted only 12 plays. After a three-and-out on the opening possession, Smith threw three consecutive interceptions -- two underthrows on deep passes (one to newcomer Percy Harvin) and an overthrow to Eric Decker.

"I never expected to start out a game like that," Smith said. "I've got to make sure I get better from that and don't allow things like that to happen and put ourselves in those type of situations."

Vick, who went 18-for-36 for 153 yards, also had ball security issues, but at least he led the offense to 23 points.

"I would love to start," said Vick, who hasn't started a game since early last season with the Philadelphia Eagles. "I don't mind that at all. ... Coach hasn't told me anything. The only thing I can do is just keep preparing myself to play."