NFL report: Josh McCown set to compete for Jets’ starting QB role or become a mentor

Josh McCown has every intention of being the New York Jets’ starting quarterback this season.

Whether that means 16 games, eight or just one, the 37-year-old veteran believes he can still be plenty productive. But if McCown ends up being the backup — and an invaluable mentor — to either Christian Hackenberg or Bryce Petty, he’s OK with that, too.

“It’s a full competition between the three of us,” McCown said Wednesday during a conference call, his first chat with reporters since signing a one-year, $6 million deal with the Jets in March.

“I think for us, all three of us will approach it as kind of being the guy,” he added. “I think that’s good for our team.”


McCown knows the reality of the situation: He’s not the future of the franchise. Not a guy who turns 38 on July 4. And, not with two youngsters on the roster in Hackenberg and Petty.

General manager Mike Maccagnan used a second-round pick on Hackenberg last year, and the former Penn State starter spent his rookie season under wraps while never seeing the field in a regular-season game. If he can take the next step in his development, he could end up under center in Week 1 — and perhaps beyond.

If not, it could be Petty, a 2015 fourth-rounder from Baylor who started four games last season before hurting his left (non-throwing) shoulder in Week 16.

The Jets claimed offensive lineman Alex Balducci off waivers from the San Francisco 49ers.


Balducci was signed by the 49ers and his former college coach Chip Kelly last year as an undrafted free agent out of Oregon. He played in two games for San Francisco after being promoted from the practice squad on Dec. 12. The 6-foot-4, 310-pound Balducci was a defensive tackle in college. He is expected to add depth on the Jets’ revamped offensive line.


Dallas Cowboys rookies Ezekiel Elliott and Dak Prescott topped NFL player merchandise and products sales. This represents the first time two rookies led the list compiled by the NFL Players Association. The list is based on total sales of officially licensed NFL player merchandise, tracking year-end results from March 1, 2016, through Feb. 28, 2017. Super Bowl MVP Tom Brady was third on the list after holding the top spot for much of the measuring period. He was followed by yet another Cowboys player, receiver Dez Bryant, and Giants wideout Odell Beckham Jr.

The Arizona Cardinals have signed center/guard Tony Bergstrom to a one-year contract. The 6-foot-5, 315 pound Bergstrom played 15 games for Houston last season and was released by the Texans on April 13. He spent his first four NFL seasons with Oakland, playing 26 games after being drafted in the 2012 third round out of the University of Utah.

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