New York Jets quarterback Geno Smith yelled a profanity at a heckler after his team lost, 24-17, to the Detroit Lions on Sept. 28.
New York Jets quarterback Geno Smith cursed a fan moments after his team's 24-17 loss to the Detroit Lions on Sept. 28.
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Smith, who later apologized for his actions, was caught on carmera by CBS New York:
"Jets quarterback Geno Smith was caught on video losing his cool with a fan following Sunday's loss at MetLife Stadium.
"Frustrated after a third straight loss and calls for his backup increasing, Smith was caught by a CBS 2 camera shouting an expletive at a heckler in the stands as he walked off the field following a 24-17 loss to the Detroit Lions.
"'Before we start this off, first of all I want to apologize to any kids saw me saying any negative remarks walking off the field,' Smith said to open his postgame news conference. 'I kind of let my temper get the best of me in that situation, and it's a part of my learning process.'
"Smith had two more turnovers as chants of 'We want Vick!' filled the stadium at time, perhaps none louder than after he was intercepted by Darius Slay in the fourth quarter.
"Smith's teammates, however, came to his defense when asked about the crowd.
"'That stuff, to me, is, B.S.,' wide receiver Eric Decker said.
"Defensive lineman Sheldon Richardson was even more blunt.
"'Shut up,' Richardson said. 'If that's the case, produce a child who can come and make it to the NFL and let's see what he's got. Other than that, just shut up.'
"Vick didn't comment on the events, and coach Rex Ryan confirmed that, despite his struggles, Smith will start again for the Jets next Sunday in San Diego.
"'No, I'm not going to replace him,' Ryan said. 'I feel good about Geno. I think he will get it turned (around). He's a tough, resilient young man. I think we're going to win. We'll win soon.'
"Smith was 17 of 33 for 209 yards, including an 11-yard TD pass to Decker, but threw an interception and lost a fumble -- giving him seven turnovers in four games.
"Fans have been left frustrated, tired of the mistakes being made by a second-year quarterback. Despite the skid and the struggles, the Jets players insist they still believe in Smith as the starting quarterback.
"'He's got to keep his composure, no matter how frustrated he gets,' Richardson said. 'But it happens.'"
ESPN.com's Rich Cimini added more details about Smith's post-game tirade:
"'F--- you!' Smith yelled at the fan moments after the Jets' 24-17 loss to the Detroit Lions.
"Footage of the incident, caught on camera by WCBS 2 New York, shows Smith -- with his helmet off, glaring into a crowd before spewing the profane response. The heckler isn't seen on camera, and there is no audio of the fan yelling at Smith.
"Smith opened his postgame news conference by apologizing for the outburst. He declined to specify what the fan said to set him off, saying only that it came from 'one guy,' and it wasn't a Michael Vick-related comment.
"Nevertheless, the fan was sitting in a section behind the Jets' bench that chanted 'We want Vick!' during the game. Smith suffered another poor performance -- an interception and two lost fumbles -- resulting in a few Vick chants after the game.
"...The incident brought back memories of a similar outburst by Ryan, who was fined $75,000 by the NFL for yelling a profanity at a fan as he walked off the field at halftime of a game in 2011.
"The league didn't immediately respond to a question on whether Smith is subject to a fine."
In a separate ESPN blog, Cimini chimed in on Smith lashing out a fan:
"We might have witnessed the beginning of the end of Smith as the Jets' starting quarterback.
"It wasn't just the unfortunate outburst; it was everything that unfolded. The supposedly improved Smith continued to regress, committing two turnovers and missing a handful of open receivers. He fed the blood-thirsty crowd, which started chanting for Michael Vick during a stretch of five consectuive three-and-out possessions in the first half. It got louder in the fourth quarter, when Smith was intercepted.
"It's one thing when a gladiator is defeated by the lions -- or, in this case, the Lions. It's quite another situation when he's affected by the coliseum's angry mob. Smith let it get to him -- the bad day, the swirling quarterback controversy, everything. During his postgame apology, he said it was only 'one guy' in the crowd, but that doesn't matter. Smith showed cracks, stipping away perhaps his greatest attribute -- his thick skin.
"Smith is known for an even-keeled demeanor, which he demonstrated during a wildly inconsistent rookie season. But Sunday's outburst showed a different side. A starting quarterback can't have rabbit ears; it's not a good look. You don't pick fights with the paying customers. It shows immaturity and a lack of poise. For all his mistakes, Mark Sanchez never lashed out at a fan."
The 23-year-old Smith has thrown for 3,968 yards, 16 touchdowns and 26 interceptions on a 68.5 passer rating in 20 career regular-season NFL games through Sept. 29, per ESPN stats.
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