As the 2017 came to a close in Foxboro, quarterback Bryce Petty reflected on his stint as starting quarterback for the Jets after Josh McCown broke his left hand in Week 14.
"The last three games we learned a lot and I think that's a broad statement," said Petty, who threw for 530 yards, one touchdown and three interception in Weeks 15-17. "But for me, three games is invaluable — the experience that I got and what I got to see from a quarterback standpoint of things I need to work on in the offseason, things that from a team aspect I need to help cultivate."
Petty completed 19 of his 36 passes for 232 yards against the Patriots, but the Green & White couldn't punch it in the end zone and went 0-of-12 on third down. Head coach Todd Bowles thought the offense executed better than the past two weeks and liked the heart his team played with not only Sunday, but also throughout the season.
"The fight and the effort were there," Bowles said. "The guys stayed together through adversity and you take those things, clean up the mistakes and go from there."
Petty flashed at times against the Patriots and looked calmer in the pocket, according to Bowles. On the first play of the second quarter, the third-year quarterback roped the rock into a tight window to TE Neal Sterling for a 35-yard pitch-and-catch that set the Jets up on the Patriots' 36-yard line following a roughing-the-passer penalty. The Jets would eventually settle for a field goal to attempt to cut the deficit to 7-6, but the Chandler Catanzaro kick sailed wide left.
In the fourth quarter, Petty dropped a beautiful ball in the basket of rookie WR ArDarius Stewart for a 46-yard gain, his longest reception of the season.
"At the end of the day, it's about wins and losses," Petty said. "When the defense gets stops on the field and gets you turnovers, you have to score on the field with points. I understand a process is cliché, but at the same time, when you've been around guys that have done it for a long time, they see things differently…I'm going to continue to grow in that and at the same time, I take it very personal."
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Even though it's been a small sample size this season for the 6'3", 230-pounder, Petty has made progress and is excited to continue on perfecting his craft in the offseason.
"I think the biggest thing is just to start with a base," he said. "Those are the things that you can look back on tape and see you lost your base there or footwork there. That's really where a lot of things you can attribute to. A lot of things are just mechanical that when you're in scout team or routes on air, things are easy. When you have a rush and people at your feet, you have to move around and see things. That's what makes an NFL quarterback an elite NFL quarterback."