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Jets sign former Raiders QB Tuiasosopo

HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. (March 23, 2007) -- The New York Jets signed free-agent quarterback Marques Tuiasosopo.

Tuiasosopo spent his first six NFL seasons with Oakland, which drafted him in the second round in 2001. He appeared in 11 games with the Raiders, including two starts, and completed 48 of 88 passes for 550 yards and two touchdowns. The athletic 28-year-old also rushed 15 times for 68 yards.

He's expected to compete with second-year quarterback Kellen Clemens for the No. 2 job behind starter Chad Pennington.

The deal for the son of former NFL defensive lineman Manu Tuiasosopo reportedly is for one year.

Oakland chose to not re-sign Tuiasosopo during the offseason after he primarily served as a backup to Rich Gannon, Kerry Collins and Aaron Brooks during his first six years.

Tuiasosopo was the fourth quarterback drafted in 2001 -- behind Michael Vick, Drew Brees and Quincy Carter -- after he finished his career at the University of Washington with 5,501 yards passing and 31 touchdown passes.

Thought to be a favorite of former coach Jon Gruden, Tuiasosopo was mostly relegated to bench duty when Gruden left for Tampa Bay after his rookie season. He threw only four passes in his first two seasons before getting a chance when Gannon went down with an injury in 2003. But he tore a knee ligament in his first start and did not play again until late in the 2005 season, when he was given one start in December against the Jets. Tuiasosopo struggled in that game and Collins started the following week.

Tuiasosopo got a few chances in mop-up duty last season, but it was Andrew Walter who got the starting nod when Brooks hurt his knee early this season.

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