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Testaverde becomes Jets starting QB

HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. (Oct. 5, 2005) -- Vinny Testaverde is the new starting quarterback for the New York Jets, a move coach Herman Edwards hopes will spark his floundering club.

The 41-year-old Testaverde, signed a week ago when Chad Pennington went out for the season, watched from the sideline as third-stringer Brooks Bollinger started in a 13-3 loss to Baltimore in Week 4. Bollinger did little to help his chances of starting again thanks to a poor offensive performance.

Testaverde makes his first start this Sunday against Tampa Bay, the team that drafted him No. 1 overall in 1987.

"At this point, I feel that Vinny's a veteran guy, we need a change a little bit as far as making some plays in the passing game. I think he can provide that," Edwards said. "Brooks did a good job for us but at the end of the day when you can't make plays passing the ball it's tough. So we decided that's for the best interest of the football team, so we made the change."

Pennington is out for the season with a torn rotator cuff, and backup Jay Fiedler also is out indefinitely with a shoulder injury. The Jets (1-3) had few options, so they signed Testaverde for his second stint with the team.

Testaverde had been out of football since finishing last season with Dallas. Though he was not in a training camp, Edwards believes Testaverde can help take the pressure off the running game because of his strong arm.

"He's won here, he still has a live arm but we have to help Vinny," Edwards said. "You can put in a new quarterback, it sounds real good but you have to play well around him. We didn't do that enough for Brooks in the game. That's no fault of Brooksy's. I have to get a spark in the team."

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