LaDainian Tomlinson is still gushing over Mark Sanchez’s gutsy late-game throws, particularly his 42-yard pass to Braylon Edwards down the right sideline, which helped set up Santonio Holmes’ game-winning score against Houston.
"I tell you what,” said Tomlinson, “that’s one of the best throws I’ve seen live. Drew Brees, Phillip Rivers, I’ve been around those guys for a while, that’s one of the best throws in clutch time that I’ve seen. I think he’s proven that he is the quarterback that everybody thought he would be.”
The running back just had a feeling about Sanchez, even when the quarterback was still at USC. Tomlinson could see the QB had a successful pro career ahead of him. And that’s why he chose to come to New York.
“He was probably the main reason that I came here. Honestly,” said Tomlinson. “Cause I seen the guy, I said, ‘You know what? This guy’s has something special to him.’ To be able to keep plays alive. He’s ahead of his time as far as the learning curve of knowing this offense. And when I looked at him, I wanted to come here because of him.”
Reports earlier this year had speculated Tomlinson, who traveled to Minnesota in March, would be a good fit for the Vikings. But the uncertainty of Brett Favre’s NFL future, along with Sanchez’s potential made the Jets an easy sell.
“At the time, I didn’t even know if Brett was going to come back,” Tomlinson said. “Even, the texts back and forth between Brett and I, he never indicated that he was going to come back or not. And so, my thought process was, ‘I can go with a guy that has led his team to the AFC championship as a rookie, got a great defense, a great coaching staff or I could go somewhere that I don’t know who’s going ot be the quarterback. So it was pretty easy for me.”