Watching Mark Sanchez throw three interceptions in the first half Sunday against the Cardinals was hard to stomach, especially if you’re a Jets fan. So naturally, your next move is to take a nap, because sleep > watching Mark Sanchez try to play football. But that goes for even the staunchest of Jets fans — even those whose son is the team’s backup quarterback.
NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport reported that Greg McElroy Sr. had to rush into his bedroom and wake his wife up when it looked like their son was about to take his first NFL snaps.
Did Greg McElroy’s family know he could replace Sanchez? Greg’s dad told me: “My wife had actually gone to take a nap.” @nfl.com story comin
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) December 3, 2012
More from McElroy Sr.:
“It was surreal,” said McElroy Sr., the Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing for the Dallas Cowboys, from his Valley Ranch office. “She gets all crazy and jumps up and we run into the living room. Coming out of the commercial break, sure enough you see him warming up. Our hearts started pounding and beating and getting a little shaky. Just two nervous wrecks. But it was exciting.”
Funny, not even the McElroys themselves believed their son would be the key piece that would basically stop the Jets franchise from imploding. But that’s just what he did, taking the field at MetLife Stadium in the late third quarter Sunday with the Jets crowd cheering vociferously at his back and throwing the game’s deciding (and pitifully lone) touchdown to Jeff Cumberland.
Still, that hasn’t been enough to earn him the starting gig for next week’s bout against Jacksonville, at least not yet. Rex Ryan is set to make his announcement on Tuesday, and it could be McElroy, Sanchez, or that guy Tim Tebow. The McElroys are holding out hope Rex goes with their son, but they keep a level head, probably because of all that napping.
“If Mark plays, that’s great,” McElroy Sr. said. “He’s happy being the backup or third-string — whatever Rex wants to do. I know he’ll just do what he’s done the first 11 games and just work hard and prepare and at least he got to play in a game. You can always say, ‘Hey, I threw a touchdown pass in the NFL.’ So regardless of whatever happens at this point, he can say, ‘I threw a touchdown pass with the New York Jets.’ There’s nothing wrong with that. That’s pretty cool. Not a lot of people can say that. But if Rex decides to give him the ball, I know he’ll work hard and prepare and do the best he can.”
At least we know this much about Greg McElroy’s future: He will continue to have awesome parents. Even if they do things like almost sleep through his NFL debut.
[NFL.com, Getty Images]