Every quarterback selected in the 2016 NFL draft has something in common — they all got their first live NFL action.

They got to drop back and throw a pass during one or two preseason games. Some have had more success than others, but the important thing is that they’ve all been given a chance to make rookie mistakes.

Well, except for Christian Hackenberg.

The former Penn State quarterback is the only member of the 2016 rookie QB class still waiting for that shot. That might surprise some considering Hackenberg was the fourth quarterback drafted. Even for those who aren’t Hackenberg believers, it still might be considered odd that the Jets’ second-round pick — who is perfectly healthy — has done nothing but sit and watch for two games.

The Jets are treating Hackenberg with newborn baby gloves. Their refusal to let Hackenberg even see the field in the preseason is befuddling, to say the least.

Sure, he was considered a project. Anybody who scouted Hackenberg knew that. Heck, even the Jets knew that.

So what’s holding them back? Why can’t a guy with a rocket arm go play against a fourth-string defense and get used to live game action again? Is his confidence so fragile that the Jets coaching staff worries about shattering it?

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Jets coach Todd Bowles said after Friday night’s game that it was “a coach’s decision” not to play Hackenberg. That, of course, can mean anything. It can mean that he doesn’t think he’s ready to face an NFL pass rush. Maybe Bowles is afraid of Hackenberg’s performance becoming the story of the night (it will be whenever he plays because the quarterback of the Jets is always the story of the night).

Neither of those reasons are good enough.

If you’ll recall, I actually wrote that Bowles sitting Hackenberg in the first game wasn’t the worst idea. Hackenberg obviously needs some mental reps. Getting him a chance to see that kind of atmosphere in person before playing could ease him into the NFL. It’s not conventional, but teams have done worse things with rookie quarterbacks.

If the Jets still feel Hackenberg isn’t ready for an NFL pass rush, they’re only hindering his confidence. The Jets are a little more solid up front than Penn State ever was. In case they forgot, he’s familiar with seeing top-flight B1G pass-rushers coming at him:

Did he handle it well? No, but if there’s any rookie quarterback who knows what pressure looks like, it’s Hackenberg.

Ok, let’s say that Bowles is still concerned about how Hackenberg will handle an NFL pass rush. Isn’t that sort of on his coaching staff? Hackenberg has been a Jet for four months now. If he can’t handle himself against a fourth-string defensive end, the coaching staff has failed him.

I hate to throw out high school recruiting rankings and games from two years ago, but it’s necessary with Hackenberg. The talent is there. Guys aren’t rated five-star prospects, and given starting jobs as true freshmen just because they look the part.

That’s why the Jets took him in the second round. They see the potential. He can make throws that few people on this planet can make. The Jets took him at that spot — ahead of the likes of Connor Cook and Dak Prescott— because they believed they could fix him and turn him into their starter.

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Nobody is saying that Hackenberg should be given the starting job this year or even next year. That’s why the Jets gave Ryan Fitzpatrick a one-year deal. His backup will be either Geno Smith or Bryce Petty, both of whom have been given the majority of preseason reps so far. Will the Jets keep four quarterbacks on the roster? Probably not, but Petty has looked solid and Smith was also a second-round pick back in 2013.

The Jets will have to make a tough decision on who to keep because in all likelihood, Hackenberg’s spot is safe even if he doesn’t get a preseason snap. That would be a mistake.

It’s obvious that the Jets are being over-cautious about shaking Hackenberg’s confidence. An unofficial redshirt is fine, but only for the regular season. This is the time for the Jets to see what they have with the guy they invested a second-round pick in. He has to be able to make rookie mistakes, and not just the ones he makes in shorts and a red jersey in practice.

It’s time to finally see what Hackenberg can do in the NFL. We’ve waited long enough.