He doesn't necessarily envision Hackenberg having a breakout game against the Titans and proving his naysayers wrong. "He's going to play all preseason, get a lot of reps".
No one is expecting Hackenberg to play like a Hall of Famer in just his third competitive National Football League game, all of them in the preseason.
"I'm looking at a successful game for the team". "I hope we make progress as an offense and as a team and whatever game Christian has he has". "I want all of my guys to play, so we go from there". We're learning as we go. "I'm not basing it exclusively as Christian's star debut as a movie theater actor". All three quarterbacks - Josh McCown, Hackenberg and Bryce Petty - will play in the game, according to Bowles.
The Jets have not decided who will start, but they have decided that Hackenberg, though still very much a work in progress, will see plenty of time with the first-team offense.
The first preseason game is a meaningful checkpoint in the quarterback competition. But he also doesn't expect to be surprised by anything Hackenberg does Saturday night.
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McCown and Hackenberg have taken the vast majority of the reps during team drills through the first two weeks of training camp. "I would be concerned if they weren't", coach Todd Bowles said, defending Hackenberg, who has thrown two interceptions each of the past two days. "If he is, so be it, but just try and get him better".
The 23-year-old Williams, already entering his third season, likes the mentality his teammates continue to exhibit. The kid's got to get a chance to play and make some mistakes and grow from it, come back from adversity and make good plays. We just want to see his overall play, and as the preseason goes, see how he does.
"He's not going to be Danny White, either", Bowles added before facetiously offering to go down the line of former Cowboys quarterbacks.
Hackenberg has had his detractors from the moment the Jets drafted him past year, though it's hard to see exactly what the Jets could lose from setting him loose. Per columnist Manish Mehta, the "prevailing sentiment" is that Hackenberg is still holding onto the ball too long. Losing reliable target Quincy Enunwa for the season will hurt, and on Saturday, he'll likely be missing running back Matt Forte (hamstring).
"I think that's an area where I can improve on and that's something that I want to focus on", Hackenberg said.
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