NFL.com is reporting that David Garrard is calling it quits because his knee simply isn't holding up. Garrard sent a text to NFL.com's Adam Schein, saying, "My knee is not holding up. Continuing to swell after practices."
While Garrard was never a top tier quarterback in the NFL, he provided several solid years for the Jacksonville Jaguars. His most successful year came in 2007 when he threw 18 touchdowns to just 3 interceptions. In the playoffs following that season, the Jaguars knocked off Pittsburgh for the second time that season at Pittsburgh before losing to the then undefeated Patriots in New England.
More importantly now is the hold that Garrard leaves on the Jets' roster. Prior to this development, Garrard was a favorite to win the Jets' starting job, but with Garrard gone, the quarterback competition in New York couldn't be more open, although Geno Smith seems to have the inside lane to winning the job.
Mark Sanchez still has some hope of recovering his career. With Garrard off the roster, he won't likely be cut in the immediate future, buying him time to impress his coaches. The problem Sanchez has is that the Jets have seen his true ability. Even if he's better than Smith right now, that's not a convincing enough reason to start him over Geno Smith.
In addition, Geno Smith's athleticism opens up the playbook for the Jets. His legs give the Jets options they wouldn't have with Mark Sanchez under center. Garrard's misfortune is a tough break for a respectable player that put together a decent career in the league. Still, that misfortune may have handed the Jets' starting job to Geno Smith on a silver platter.