Bowles was deciding between starting Fitzpatrick and giving Bryce Petty an extended look this year. However, it appears as though he made the decision to go with Fitzpatrick and hope he can help them best the Pats.
Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News reported last week there are “rumblings” that Bowles’ refusal to name Petty the team’s starting quarterback moving forward was due to his concern that the team could check out for the remainder of the season if he ends up starting against the Patriots next week.
Fitzpatrick, 33, wound up signing a one-year, $12 million contract that’s fully guaranteed with the Jets after a prolonged stalemate that cost him most nearly all of the offseason workouts. He’ll be an unrestricted free agent next year.
In 2016, Fitzpatrick has appeared in nine games and completed 56.4 percent of his passes for 1,983 yards to go along with eight touchdowns and 13 interceptions. Pro Football Focus has him rated as the No. 34 quarterback out of 35 qualifying players.