FLORHAM PARK, N.J. - "A few different opinions'' will put Mark Sanchez's mind at ease.
The quarterback insisted all is well between him and the front office -- and the Jets' medical staff. But nevertheless, Sanchez still plans to get multiple second opinions on his injured right shoulder.
Although he praised the "great job'' team doctor Ken Montgomery has done, Sanchez said Monday that "in a situation like this, it's prudent to get some outside opinions.''
Sanchez has been sidelined since taking a hard hit by tackle Marvin Austin in an Aug. 24 preseason game against the Giants. Since then, the Jets have disclosed little about the injury, other than that Sanchez is day to day. Rex Ryan was the first to announce Sanchez will seek second opinions on his right shoulder, though he insisted the former face of the franchise hadn't suffered a setback.
A source told Newsday on Sunday that reports of Sanchez having either a torn labrum or a dislocated right shoulder are "inaccurate.'' But the quarterback, who was inactive for the Jets' win over the Bucs, refused to discuss the severity of the injury.
"Right now, I'm feeling a whole lot better,'' said Sanchez, who was spotted throwing with his left arm before Sunday's game. "I'm getting stronger and stronger each and every day.''
It's been reported he'll fly to Birmingham, Ala., to see noted orthopedic surgeon James Andrews, but Sanchez wouldn't say. He did, however, confirm that he'll be in Foxborough for Thursday night's game against the Patriots. He, of course, won't be active. Rookie Geno Smith, who won his NFL debut against the Bucs, will start against New England.
Smith said he's been leaning heavily on Sanchez's experience with a short week of preparation. "Mark's always going to be there for me,'' said Smith, who threw for 256 yards and a touchdown, with an interception and a fumble. "It's going to be extremely helpful. We're going to prepare and do this thing together.''
Sanchez admitted being sidelined Sunday "was killing me.'' But he said that even though he's been "torn up'' over the injury, he still was "Geno's biggest fan'' during the game. After the Bucs took a 17-15 lead on a field goal with 34 seconds left, Sanchez told his teammates not to get discouraged.
"He said, 'Don't hold ya'll heads down 'cause we can still come down and win,' '' wide receiver Stephen Hill said. "And for some reason, that boosted me up a little more.''
Ultimately, winning is the most important thing, Sanchez said. "Let's say I come back Week 3 or 4, you don't want to come back and we're 0-4,'' he said.
It's unclear just how long it will take him to get back on the field. But he expects everyone involved will have more clarity on his injury status in a few days. Sanchez said getting a second opinion "was kind of part of the plan the whole way,'' adding he also sought outside counsel on his right shoulder injury in 2009.
"I feel like we're all on the same page now,'' Sanchez said, adding that the only indication he's received from John Idzik is that the general manager wants what's best for him.
"There's nothing wrong with going to visit with some other doctors. There's no agenda here. The agenda is to get me healthy and play well, hopefully.''