FLORHAM PARK, NJ - After a long, drawn out contract dispute that started back in March, the New York Jets and Ryan Fitzpatrick agreed to a one-year deal on Wednesday, July 27th. The deal, reportedly $12 million for one year with another $3 million in incentives was first reported by ESPN and NFL Network.
The original contract offer was increased last week from $9 million to $12 million, and according to TAPinto sources, Ryan Fitzpatrick had until 7 p.m. to complete the deal.
"It definitely was a long process" Fitzpatrick said last Thursday. "After coming to the realization that it wasn't going to get done right away and that it was going to take some time, I tried my best to put it out of my mind and tried to live life normally."
The deal cements the sentiment that the New York Jets had put their faith in Ryan Fitzpatrick over Geno Smith in their quest to finally make it in the playoffs this year. Smith was in line to be the default starter while the Fitzpatrick contract negotiation continued to linger unsolved. Smith had a dismal 2015 season, missing most of the preseason after he had the jaw punch incident in the locker room, and he will certainly have his work cut out for him if he gets a chance to play for the Jets or elsewhere.
The New York Jets entered mini-camp back in June with no alternative but to put up a good front that the team was behind Geno Smith. When Todd Bowles was questioned about who would be the No. 1 starter and who would be No. 2 he said, "With all due respect, I'm through talking about Fitz. I'm going to worry about the guys I have on the team. I think I've expressed and said everything about the quarterback that I'm going to say at this standpoint."
The team answered any lingering questions fans may have had about who would be the starter by signing the Fitzpatrick deal and immediately reporting that Ryan Fitzpatrick would be the #1 quarterback.
Now that training camp has started, the New York Jets can get down to some serious practice.