The hiring of Lee came less than two weeks after the Bills named former Jets head coach Rex Ryan as their head coach.
In an interview with the Bills' official website, Lee said that the Jets played well enough defensively to win games but that Smith's play "cost us."
“Rex and I talked about it, he had some inconsistency and the up and down part is what killed us,” Lee said of Smith. “He would get loose with the football. We played good enough defense to win over there both years, but his play it’ll cost you and it cost us. But he also did some great things. The last five games this season he was the seventh-rated passer in the league. He had a perfect passer rating in his last game at Miami. The potential and ability is there.”
The Jets selected Smith in the second round of the 2013 draft out of West Virginia.
In 30 games over two seasons, Smith has completed 57.5 percent of his passes for 5,571 yards with 25 touchdowns and 34 interceptions.
The Jets recently hired Mike Maccagnan as their general manager, Todd Bowles as their head coach and Chan Gailey as their offensive coordinator.
Bowles and Maccagnan spoke about Smith at their introductory news conference on Wednesday.
Maccagnan said he is "excited to work with Geno," while Bowles said that "We understand that if Geno's our guy going forward, we have to get some people around him and do a lot of things better, and Chan is outstanding at that."
The Jets are viewed as one of several teams that are likely to select a quarterback in the upcoming draft. New York went 4-12 and finished last in the AFC East this season.