Jets quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick (14) before a game against the...

Jets quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick (14) before a game against the Jacksonville Jaguars, Sunday, Nov. 8, 2015. Credit: Lee S. Weissman / Lee S. Weissman

Neither thumb surgery nor four interceptions in his last two games has led to a change at quarterback, so for all practical purposes, the Jets are Ryan Fitzpatrick's team for the remainder of the season.

The Jets have made that abundantly clear, even after coach Todd Bowles hinted at the possibility that he might make a change after Fitzpatrick threw two fourth-quarter interceptions last Sunday in the Jets' 24-17 loss to the Texans.

It is Fitzpatrick or bust as the Jets, losers of four of their last five games, try to stay in the wild-card playoff race with a key AFC East game against the Dolphins on Sunday at MetLife Stadium. Bowles seems unwilling to turn to the more talented but less reliable Geno Smith, so Fitzpatrick's play will dictate whether the Jets can make it into the tournament.

But Bowles and general manager Mike Maccagnan eventually will have to decide on a more permanent solution at quarterback, and it's doubtful that Fitzpatrick will be the answer beyond this season.

Smith almost surely will be gone, given that the Jets have shown almost zero faith in him after he was literally punched out of the lineup by linebacker IK Enemkpali in training camp. And while Fitzpatrick could be asked back to continue to bridge the gap between now and the time the Jets can upgrade the position, the likelihood of his continued role as the starter is questionable at best.

So where do the Jets turn to for the answer at quarterback? Here's are the possibilities for 2016:

Fitzpatrick: His two-year, $7.5-million contract expires after the season, and his future with the Jets very well could be determined by what happens in the final six games of the regular season. If he can get the Jets to the playoffs, they likely will bring him back on an affordable contract and at least let him compete for the starting job. Fitzpatrick has been a very capable locker room leader, although his upside as a passer is limited. He's best suited as a game manager, and if the team plays good defense and has a strong running game, his skill set is perfectly suitable. The problem is he can't be relied on to win many games on his own - as the last two losses have shown.

Bryce Petty, Jets: The Jets took Petty in the fourth round this year, so he's clearly a project. But at 6-3, 230 pounds, with a good arm and a high football IQ, he is worth trying to develop. Just how good he can be as a starter remains to be seen, and the Jets might not be willing to go into next season committed to him as the No. 1 quarterback.

Drew Brees, Saints: The Saints ultimately might be willing to trade Brees, but a lot has to happen for that scenario to materialize. For starters, the Saints almost certainly would have to fire coach Sean Payton, who remains committed to Brees. Not only that, but Brees would have to agree to a trade, and considering his deep roots in New Orleans, that might not happen. A more likely outcome is that Brees reworks his deal to stay with the Saints.

Johnny Manziel, Browns: Stop. Just … stop. Even though Manziel has worn out his welcome in Cleveland and could be available in a trade next year, why would the Jets even want to go there? He has clearly not demonstrated an ability to be mature enough to be a No. 1 quarterback; he was benched this week after being anointed as the starter because he partied and wound up having his pictures plastered all over social media during the Browns' bye week after assuring the team he would not be a distraction. Manziel is everything Bowles is not; there's no way he fits with the Jets.

Peyton Manning, Broncos: There's tremendous uncertainty with Manning now that he is out for at least another two weeks - and possibly longer - with a foot injury. The Broncos intend to bring back Manning as their starter once he's healthy, but there's no guarantee, especially if Brock Osweiler continues to play well in his absence. It's uncertain if Manning would want to keep playing, but if he does, the sense around the league is that the Broncos would move on after two straight years in which injuries played a factor. The Jets would have to believe they're in a win-now mode if they made a move with Manning, and even then, it would be a huge risk. Manning will turn 40 in March, and he simply doesn't have enough left in the tank.

Colin Kaepernick, 49ers: Here's where it gets interesting. The 49ers are almost certainly finished with Kaepernick, who was benched in favor of Blaine Gabbert and is now out for the season after undergoing surgery on his left (non-throwing) shoulder. He's only 28 and has excellent mobility and a live arm. The issue is how well he can adapt to a new system, something the 49ers were concerned about once Jim Harbaugh left after the 2014 season. Jets offensive coordinator Chan Gailey has found a way to make it work with mobile quarterbacks, as evidenced by his experience with Kordell Stewart in Pittsburgh. The 49ers probably would take a third-round pick for Kaepernick.

Robert Griffin III, Washington: It's amazing how quickly RGIII's star fell after such a brilliant rookie seasons. Knee problems and continued coaching issues in Washington have made him disappear on this roster, and he's not expected to play the remainder of the year. He's an unrestricted free agent after the season, but his value on the open market is in question. Certainly he'll draw interest, but he's no longer the confident quarterback he was during his terrific run as a rookie, and there are injury concerns, including a concussion issue.

Kirk Cousins, Washington: Jay Gruden went with Cousins over RG3, and the coach appears committed to Cousins for the long haul. But Cousins also is an unrestricted free agent after the season, and Washington likely is not inclined to use the franchise tag on him to keep him there at least one more season. Cousins certainly is a solid quarterback, but he throws a few too many interceptions for our liking. Still, he's at least worth considering.

Matthew Stafford, Lions: Chances are he's not even on the market, because the Lions have indicated in recent weeks that they're not inclined to move him. But in the unlikely event that they choose to move on from the former first-round pick, the Jets would be wise to at least consider it. Stafford has a big arm and can be highly productive, even if he is prone to throwing interceptions in bunches. The likelihood is he stays in Detroit.

Sam Bradford, Eagles: The Eagles made a bold move in a Nick Foles-for Bradford swap with the Rams. But while Bradford had showed modest improvement in Philly until he got hurt (injuries have been a consistent issue throughout his career), a long-term commitment may not make sense.His contract is up after this season, but the market remains uncertain for him, especially with Chip Kelly appearing on the outs.

The draft: There are no can't-miss college prospects in 2016 but some solid prospects will be available. Memphis' Paxton Lynch, California's Jared Goff, Michigan State's Connor Cook, Ohio State's Cardale Jones and Penn State's Christian Hackenberg top the list. And the Jets would be wise to keep selecting quarterbacks in the draft, because it's wise to keep trying to develop them and see if you can hit with one or more of them.