Mark Sanchez has plenty to be thankful for this holiday season, particularly that the Philadelphia Eagles gave him a roster spot that the former New York Jets quarterback utilized to resurrect his career.
“Just playing again, being back on the field is a huge win for me personally," said Sanchez, who spoke to reporters on Wednesday. "The biggest thing was being healthy and being able to throw and make all the throws, whether it was on the run or in the pocket, and get back to being 100% healthy.
“That was the most important thing and then after that was having some big games and winning some big games. We lost some tough ones. I know I can play at this level and compete at a high level. It was a ton of fun. I've got one more chance” on Sunday.
The former USC and Mission Viejo High star spent the 2013 season out of commission with the Jets because of a shoulder injury he sustained in a preseason game against the Giants. He became expendable in New York when the Jets decided to put their future in the hands of second-round draft pick Geno Smith.
The Eagles signed Sanchez and installed him as the backup to Nick Foles, who went down in Week 9 with a broken collar bone. Sanchez led Philadelphia to three wins over the next four games by throwing six touchdown passes, but since then, the team has lost three consecutive games and fell out of playoff contention last week with a 27-24 loss to the Washington Redskins.
Sanchez has completed 175 of 273 passes (64.1%) for 2,126 yards and 12 touchdowns. He's had 10 passes intercepted and fumbled seven times, though.
“I think for a good chunk of it ... it has been a really positive experience,” Sanchez said. “Unfortunately, it didn't turn out the way we wanted.
“I know we are just a couple throws away from being in a totally different spot. That's tough, but you have to learn from it and keep improving.”