Mark Sanchez is having a rough year.
The New York Jets starting quarterback ranks among the worst in the NFL in passer rating and completion percentage. He’s booed by his own fans and has endured chants calling for the backup quarterback. His team has only managed four victories and will almost certainly miss the postseason for the second straight year.
He probably could’ve done without this: During a nationally televised game against the New England Patriots on Thanksgiving night, Sanchez lost one of his 10 fumbles this season in the worst possible manner -- by running into lineman Brandon Moore’s rear end.
“I guess [I was] more stunned than anything,” Sanchez said Wednesday. “Just like a car accident. I was like, ‘Whoa. What just happened?’ Then, the ball’s gone. It was weird.”
The ball was picked up by New England safety Steve Gregory, who returned it 32 yards for a touchdown as part of a 35-point second quarter for the Patriots.
“It’s embarrassing,” Sanchez said. “You screw up the play and I’m trying to do the right thing. It’s not like I’m trying to force something. I start to slide and I slide right in the worst spot I possibly could, right into Brandon Moore.”
The blunder has been replayed countless times, parodied on YouTube and just generally mocked for the past week. But Sanchez said his teammates haven’t given him too hard a time about it.
“Hopefully we’ll laugh about it later,” he said.