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Jets Q&A: Geno Smith feels 'decent but not great'

Geno Smith of the Jets looks on in

Geno Smith of the Jets looks on in the first quarter against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium on Sunday, Oct. 26, 2014. Credit: Jim McIsaac

How serious is Geno Smith's shoulder injury?

Rex Ryan expected to have Smith available Sunday against the Chiefs, but the second-year quarterback was ruled inactive because of an injured right shoulder. Smith showed some zip on his pregame warm-up passes but later said he felt "decent but not great." That led Ryan to keep Matt Simms as his No. 2 quarterback behind Michael Vick.

"It wasn't like he had a major setback, it's just that he didn't feel great about driving the ball on certain throws," Ryan said.

Smith said he's "been getting better as the days have gone on" but gave the impression that this injury could be of a longer term than the team might have anticipated. "I think as the weeks go along, I'll get progressively better," said Smith, who injured his throwing shoulder last week against the Bills. "At this point, we're assessing it day by day. Every day we talk over things and some days I feel better than others. Some days I'm less sore."

So is there a chance he will back up Vick next week against the Steelers?

"We'll have to see. It's a day-by-day thing," Smith said.

What was the defense's reaction to Anthony Fasano's tipped-pass touchdown reception?

In one word: "Devastating," nose tackle Damon Harrison said.

Poor tackling led to Jamaal Charles' 1-yard touchdown run on the Chiefs' first drive, but the Jets were doomed by a bad-luck bounce on Kansas City's next score.

On first-and-goal at the Jets' 2, linebacker Calvin Pace tipped Alex Smith's pass right into the hands of Fasano, who was seated on the turf after making a block. The tight end was short of the goal line when he caught the ball, but he lunged toward the end zone, untouched, for the touchdown.

"There is a guy sitting on the ground and he gets a touchdown," Harrison said. "That's heartbreaking."

Said Ryan: "That's how this season's gone for us."

Though bad breaks continue to be a theme in this 1-8 season, linebacker Demario Davis remained positive.

"You always want to get the breaks to go your way, but that's life. They don't always go your way," he said. "The thing that we have to do is keep fighting."

Asked about his fluky play, Fasano replied: "I'm a believer in the harder you work, the more lucky you'll get."

What was Ryan's reason for benching Antonio Allen?

The converted safety started at cornerback Sunday, but by the second half, he was a sideline bystander.

Asked after the game if he benched Allen, Ryan said: "Yes. I wanted to stop somebody. Nothing about him, it was just that you try to give yourself an opportunity. You don't know how the game plan is going to go, you've got to tighten up some of your coverage. And I thought that putting [Josh] Thomas out there gave us our best shot."

How goes the cornerback situation?

Not well. Ryan's decision to start free-agent pickup Marcus Williams alongside Allen at cornerback is another indication of a team still searching for answers. Williams, whom the Jets signed to their practice squad on Sept. 26, was promoted to the active roster on Tuesday and started against the Chiefs instead of Thomas.

"He outplayed everybody on the practice field," Ryan said of Williams, an undrafted free agent who played for North Dakota State.

Thomas said he was under the impression he would be starting until the coaches made the change on Saturday. He also said the coaching staff "narrowed the game plan down" for the cornerbacks.

Said Thomas, "Rex is brilliant, as far as defensive scheming, and I think they kind of slowed things down for everybody just to help us play fast."

Despite his frustration with Allen's play, Ryan wouldn't officially close the door on the cornerback experiment with his third-year safety. "We'll see," the coach said. "Never say never."

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