Thirty paces down the hallway 30 yards clear of a soundly beaten football team a friendly face approached the man typing furiously into his smart phone a brace bracketing his right shoulder and a thin smile creasing his face.

“You have to be happy you weren’t in the line of fire” he was asked.

“I’ve been there” Mark Sanchez said. “Believe me. I’ve been there.”
For four years these were Sanchez’s messes to clean up to answer to to account for. And Sanchez had plenty of practice. On these very grounds at LP Field Sanchez may well have played his last meaningful downs as a Jet last December and there were vintage banana peels aplenty littered all across that 14-10 catastrophe.
That was hard to watch.

But this might’ve been even harder for Sanchez for the Jets who dressed out for the coaching staff whose very futures are tied so closely to each result of this 2013 season.
Certainly for Geno Smith.

“This is pro football” Smith said. “Every man has to step up.”
Four times Sunday afternoon Smith surrendered the football. All four times the Titans turned those gaffes into touchdowns. Twenty-eight points would be too high a wall for Peyton Manning to scale let alone a rookie quarterback making his fourth start and a team that simply doesn’t have that much margin for error.

The final score was 38-13 so that alone tells you how costly Smith’s carelessness was to the Jets cause. And in case there was any room for interpretation Rex Ryan was kind enough to break away from the kids-will-be-kids pap with which the Jets have been buffering Smith in favor of a blunt honest sentence or two after he was asked fourth week in a row if this is the tax to be paid for starting a rookie.

“How many times are we going to make that excuse?” Ryan said. “One of these days we’ve got to learn from it and it better be soon. We’d better learn in a hurry.”

It didn’t take long for the coach to snap out of that to remind everyone “this isn’t only on one guy” to take a hammer to the rest of the team to stress that the Jets were outplayed in every phase of the game “especially coaching.”