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David Garrard Returns, Placed on Exempt List

Posted Oct 10, 2013

David Garrard has made a return to the Jets.  Garrard, a nine-year NFL veteran who originally signed with us back in March before a balky knee forced him to leave in May, is on the exempt list for two games and we have this week and next to decide whether to activate him.

“I was able to take the whole summer off and let my body heal.  I started training a couple of months ago and my knee feels great,” said Garrard.  “I’m sitting at home, watching games thinking, ‘Why am I at home?  Why am I doing this to myself?'  I didn’t want to have any regrets one day.”

The 6’1”, 239-pound Garrard is a career 61.6% passer with 89 TDs and 54 INTs.  A fourth-round pick of the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2002, the East Carolina product is eligible to do everything with the club — including practice and attend meetings — except play in games.

“I reached out to Mr. Idzik,” Garrard said referring to a call he placed to Jets GM John Idzik.  “He has given me another chance, so it’s truly a blessing.”

This is a low-risk, high-reward move for us.  The benefits of adding Garrard to the competition in the spring still exist today.  Given the 2-game exemption, we are afforded some time to evaluate Garrard’s physical condition. 

Garrard could provide valuable insurance at the quarterback position and he is a respected veteran who was 40-38 as a starter with the Jags.  If his knee doesn’t cooperate, then no roster move is necessary.

Rookie Geno Smith, who was just named the AFC’s Offensive Player of the Week, has started our first five games while completing 60.3% of his passes for 1,289 yards with 7 TDs and 8 INTs.  Matt Simms, who had an impressive training camp yet has never taken a regular season snap, is listed as Smith’s backup while former first-round selection QB Brady Quinn, a veteran with starting experience, is the club’s current No. 3 and has been inactive for four games.

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