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Hackenberg, Petty React to QB Decision

Second- and Third-Year Pros Happy for McCown, Preparing As if They’re Starting


After head coach Todd Bowles named veteran Josh McCown the Jets starting quarterback, both Christian Hackenberg and Bryce Petty insisted that they'll keep pushing forward and competing.

Hackenberg, a second-round pick of the Jets in 2016, started the team's second and third preseason games against the Lions and the Giants.

"I'm happy for him," Hackenberg said of McCown. "We have to keep moving forward and keep getting better, but Coach made the decision with the best interest of the team and we all have to trust that."

The closer in each of the team's three summer contests, Petty completed 15-of-18 for 250 yards with 3 TDs vs. the Giants.

"For me, it hasn't changed anything," Petty said. "We had progress, which is what I wanted from OTAs to training camp so we're getting better and that's the thing about it. Nothing is going to change as far as my approach to it, Hackenberg's approach to it or Josh's. We're going to continue to strive and compete in that room every time we get in there. This is one of those leagues that one, you have to be ready, and two, a lot of time you never know when that opportunity is going to come. So you have to make the most of it."

While Bowles named a regular-season starter, he indicated he was in no hurry to name a backup behind McCown. All three quarterbacks will be available for action Thursday including Petty, who suffered a minor knee injury on the Green & White's final possession Saturday.

"Right now our focus is being the starter," Petty said. "I know that's already been named, but you don't come in to be the backup, you come in to be the starter, and so that's how you approach it. I think that's something that's kind of helped me since I've been here. It's not about titles, it's about being the best quarterback that you can be and that sets up this team."

Despite uneven results in game action, Hackenberg said he's more prepared than he was last summer based on the reps he received in the preseason.

"Now, we're heading into the season. You have to be ready when you're number is called," he said. "Ultimately, you have to keep preparing and you have to keep getting better and taking advantage of every opportunity you get to get a rep."

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