Jets Have Issues at No. 2 QB Too

Jets starting quarterback Chad Pennington has proven fragile in his career, and the Vikings might end up seeing a rookie if Pennington is knocked out of a game for the first time this season.

Oft-injured Jets quarterback Chad Pennington is only three games away from making it through an entire 16-game regular-season schedule for the first time in his NFL career.

But if he is replaced at any time the rest of the way because of injury or ineffectiveness, it very well could be rookie Kellen Clemens who gets the call.

Against Buffalo, not only did Clemens get four snaps on the Jets' final series in a mop-up role, he also was the No. 2 quarterback for the first time this season. Patrick Ramsey was listed as the third quarterback.

"Kellen had strung together a number of good weeks," coach Eric Mangini said. "We felt he should be bumped up to No. 2. It was just that time where he had earned it."

"They told me Saturday night, right after the offense-defense meetings," said Clemens, a second-round choice. "And I was excited. I slept pretty good that night. I was excited to have the opportunity.

"Apparently I'm making some progress, in the coaches' eyes," Clemens added. "I came here to hopefully compete and help the team out any way I can. Being No. 2 and moving up the chart a little bit, I'm excited about moving in the right direction."

Clemens is 0-for-2 in pass attempts in two mop-up stints this season, and has been sacked four times in 11 snaps. Ramsey has attempted one pass, a long incompletion against Houston after Pennington came out of the game briefly because he had the wind knocked out of him. Pennington returned after Ramsey's one snap.

"I'm not sure whether it's permanent or not," Ramsey said. "What I'm going to do is come out here, work on the game plan and be ready whenever the time comes and do whatever I can to help the team. Obviously, I want the opportunity to play again."

It's becoming apparent that he probably won't get that opportunity here. Most likely, Pennington will be competing against Clemens and perhaps a different veteran quarterback in 2007 for the starting role. Ramsey doesn't appear to be in the Jets' plans.

"I had a hunch that things were changing," Clemens said. "The last couple of weeks I definitely got more reps with our offense in practice."

With the Jets preparing to visit Minnesota, Mangini said of the No. 2 job, "It'll be open again this week and whoever plays better will be the two."


  • QB Chad Pennington went 22-for-35 for 182 yards and one touchdown with two interceptions against Buffalo. He had only 63 yards passing in the second half. His first-half interception off a tipped ball was returned 58 yards for a touchdown by Nate Clements.

  • RB Leon Washington started and had 55 yards on seven carries. His 18-yard end-around was the Jets' longest run of the game.

  • RB Cedric Houston didn't start, but had the most carries (18) of any Jet. However, he gained only 50 yards for a 2.8-yard average. He also was trapped three times for losses.

  • TE Chris Baker had two receptions for 17 yards, his second straight multiple-catch game after five consecutive games with one catch apiece.

  • WR Laveranues Coles had four receptions for 67 yards, including a 10-yard touchdown catch. He also had a 23-yard reception for the Jets' longest play of the game.

  • WR Jerricho Cotchery had five receptions for 37 yards. He is averaging six catches over his last seven games.

  • SS Kerry Rhodes had a team-leading seven tackles.

  • LB Victor Hobson had two sacks. He also had six tackles.

  • LB Jonathan Vilma was in on only one tackle. Vilma led the NFL in tackles in 2005, but has struggled at times in the Jets' new 3-4 defense this season.

  • LB-DE Bryan Thomas had at least one sack for the third consecutive game, as he dropped J.P. Losman for an 8-yard loss in the second quarter.

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