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Moss to start at receiver in place of Conway

HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. -- Curtis Conway was the New York Jets'
biggest free-agent signing this past offseason. He now has a seat
on the bench.

Coach Herman Edwards said Wednesday that Santana Moss would
start at receiver when the Jets play next, home against Buffalo on
Oct. 12.

Edwards needs to do something to energize the winless Jets
(0-4). The bye week is as good a time as any to give younger
players more practice and prepare them to play. Moss gives the Jets
a speedier option at receiver.

"Curtis is fine, he understands," Edwards said. "I told him,
'Hey, you're still going to play receiver, and we expect you to
catch balls and make plays for us."'

The Jets have scored three touchdowns in four games and
struggled inside the 20. Moss, a former first-round pick, leads the
team with 236 yards and an average of 16.9 yards a catch. He also
has the longest reception of the season, 61 yards against Miami.

Conway could be considered a disappointment. The 11-year veteran
signed a three-year deal in March worth up to $7.5 million after
the Jets lost Laveranues Coles to the Washington Redskins.

While Coles is one of the top receivers in the league this year
with 453 yards, Conway has 14 receptions for 203 yards with no
touchdowns. He also had three drops in a 23-16 loss to New England
two weeks ago, including one in the end zone, and one drop 17-6
loss to Dallas last week.

"The bottom line is when you're out there and you're not making
plays, this is the result," Conway said. "That is what happened.
I feel like I've made some plays but I've left some plays out
there. When it's time to make a change, coach has to make a change.
As a player you have to understand that."

Moss will start opposite Wayne Chrebet. Edwards also said
seldom-used Jonathan Carter could see time with Moss to give the
Jets even more speed on the field at the same time.

Of the moves the Jets made in the offseason, Conway seemed to be
the biggest. Guard Tom Nutten was signed to replace Randy Thomas
but retired in training camp, while kicker Doug Brien and punter
Dan Stryzinski were signed to improve special teams.

Conway said he was not surprised with the decision.

"I'm still on the team," he said. "I've been in the league 11
years, and I've seen things happen like this so it's not like I'm
shocked. I left some plays out there. When you're in situation like
this you try to find things that we're lacking. They made a
decision."

In addition, linebackers Victor Hobson, Jason Glenn and Kenyatta
Wright will rotate in with starters Mo Lewis, Marvin Jones and Sam
Cowart.

Chris Baker will rotate with starting tight end Anthony Becht,
and LaMont Jordan also could get some more playing time at running
back. Jonathan Goodwin also could rotate in with right guard Brent
Smith, and B.J. Askew could spell Jerald Sowell at fullback.

"I want to see competition amongst our team," Edwards said.
"The only way you can do that is to get guys in the game. It picks
up your level of play. When you're 0-4, you have to do something.
You can't stay status quo. You can't say it's going to get fixed.
I'm doing to do everything I can to fix it."

That includes hoping to shake up some veteran players. Jones
said the defense has not played together this season, which has
caused the poor performance.

"Everybody has somebody they have to depend on," Jones said.
"The linebackers and linemen, all of us have to work together.
That's just football."

Edwards said the younger players will have a chance to earn
starting jobs if they play better than the veterans. But he will
not begin to determine that until after the game against Buffalo.

First, he wants to give everyone a chance to prove how well they
can do.

"Anybody breathing will get an opportunity to play," Edwards
said.