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Jets Players Want Clemens, Not Brunell

The Jets can finally sign Mark Brunell on Thursday, when the “Final Eight” rule is lifted, but what are the players feelings toward singing the soon to be 41 year old quarterback?

Manish Mehta reports that the players actually prefer Clemens over Brunell.

Don’t expect the Jets’ players to do backflips if Mark Brunell takes over as the team’s No. 2 quarterback this season.

A Daily News poll of more than a dozen starters revealed that the overwhelming majority favored Kellen Clemens over the 17-year veteran if Mark Sanchez misses any time in 2010.

“Brunell? Isn’t he like 50 years old?” said one player of the three-time Pro Bowl signal caller, who will turn 40 in September.

“I didn’t even know Brunell was still in the league until we played them last year,” said another player of the former Saints’ backup, who filed for bankruptcy last week and is a reported $24.7 million in debt after failed real estate ventures.

Although most of the players agreed that Brunell would be a good mentor for Sanchez, they felt he had very little to offer on the field at this stage of his career. Brunell has only one start and 30 pass attempts in the past three seasons. He has just one more start (10) than Clemens (9) in the past four years.

Even Tom Coughlin, who coached Brunell for eight seasons in Jacksonville, passed on the veteran this offseason when he was looking for a backup for Eli Manning.

Some Jets players also expressed concern over offensive line adjustments that would be needed to protect a left-handed quarterback. They firmly believe that Clemens, who signed a $1.1 million restricted free agent tender in the offseason, is the better option despite his career 4-5 record as a starter in four seasons. (Clemens won his only start for an injured Sanchez last year in Tampa).

“Nobody knows this offense as well as Kellen,” tight end Dustin Keller said. “If anything would ever happen to Mark, we know we have a solid guy that will go in there and knows all the checks. He doesn’t have to get all the reps (in practice) to learn this stuff, because he already knows everything.”

“He’s handled himself like a pro,” one player said. “I think we can win with him in there. We don’t need Brunell.”
Wow. Some pretty strong words to say the least.
I wouldn’t think that the players support Clemens that much. I can say for certain that fans don’t feel the same way about Clemens.
I do agree though, that Brunell as our #2 quarterback does worry me. I like him to mentor Sanchez, but the man can’t cut it anymore.
I wouldn’t be opposed to the scenario where Brunell is the #2, but the Jets keep Clemens on as the #3. If Ainge or O’Connell hasn’t shown anything yet, they likely never will so there is no point of keeping even one of them.

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  1. […] far from alone on this stance. Even the players are scared of Brunell being the primary backup. Enjoyed this post? Subscribe to Jets Gab via RSS Feed or E-mail and receive daily news updates […]

  2. […] I’m far from alone on this stance. Even the players are scared of Brunell being the primary backup. […]

  3. […] I’m far from alone on this stance. Even the players are scared of Brunell being the primary backup. […]

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