1:00 PM ET, September 25, 2005
Jacksonville (1-1) at NY Jets (1-1), Sunday 1:00 pm EDT
EAST RUTHERFORD, New Jersey (Ticker) -- Chad Pennington and Byron Leftwich rewrote the record books in the collegiate ranks at Marshall. On Sunday, they face each other for the second time in the NFL when the New York Jets host the Jacksonville Jaguars.
While at Marshall, Pennington and Leftwich established themselves as the two most prolific quarterbacks in school history. Pennington was the starter from 1995-99 before being succeeded by Leftwich, who took over in 2000.
Pennington remains the school's all-time leader in completions (1,026), attempts (1,619), passing yards (13,143) and touchdown passes (115). Leftwich is second in those same categories - completions (939), attempts (1,442), passing yards (11,903) and touchdown passes (89).
Both were first-round picks. Pennington was taken 18th overall in 2000 by the Jets while Leftwich was selected seventh overall in 2003 by Jacksonville.
The first meeting between the two came here on November 23, 2003 and Pennington rallied the Jets to a 13-10 win, engineering a 94-yard drive in the final minutes.
Pennington finished 25-of-39 for 236 yards and a touchdown with an interception while Leftwich completed 17-of-33 passes for 172 yards with an interception.
Defense may once again dominate the second matchup between the quarterbacks, especially since Leftwich is nursing a strained groin muscle and the Jets may not have the services of reigning NFL rushing champion Curtis Martin due to an injured right knee.
Leftwich suffered the injury when he was sacked by Raheem Brock with 5:54 left in the fourth quarter of the Jaguars' 10-3 loss at Indianapolis last week. But Leftwich hobbled back onto the field for Jacksonville's next possession and moved his team to the Indianapolis 25 in the final seconds. But on the last play of the game, Leftwich's pass intended for Jimmy Smith in the end zone was broken up by Colts safety Bob Sanders.
Martin rushed for 72 yards on 31 carries in the Jets' 17-7 win over Miami last week. He experienced soreness in the knee Monday and was diagnosed with a strained knee.
Since joining the Jets in 1998, Martin has missed just one game and played in 109 straight.
"I've seen him (Martin) play with two sprained ankles, I've seen him play with an MCL, I've seen him play with his tailbone muscle ripped off his tailbone," Pennington said of Martin. "It's always been a comfort zone knowing you would have (No.) 28 behind you."
Pennington is recovering from offseason shoulder surgery and appears to lack velocity on his passes. Last week, he completed 19-of-30 for 190 yards and two touchdowns in the win over Miami.
Jacksonville's defense flustered Peyton Manning in last week's loss to Indianapolis. The NFL Most Valuable Player each of the last two years, Manning completed just 13-of-28 passes for 122 yards with an interception.
Series: The Jaguars lead, 3-2.
Next week: Jacksonville hosts Denver, October 2 The NY Jets visit Baltimore, October 2
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This game features two possible playoff teams with identical records heading into this critical matchup. Jaguars defensive coordinator Mike Smith will have to come up with another great game plan with the injury to SS Donovin Darius, so look for the Jaguars to get back to the basics against the run. Jets QB Chad Pennington will need to improve his rhythm and timing early in the game against a defense that won't stop coming.
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New York Jets
|Avg Points Allowed||14.7||20.0|
Team Averages & NFL Ranks
|TEAM OFFENSE||TEAM||PER GAME AVERAGE|
|TEAM DEFENSE||TEAM||PER GAME AVERAGE|
|Pass Yds Allowed||JAX|
|Rush Yds Allowed||JAX|
Head to Head Matchups (Since 2001)
|Jacksonville leads 2-1|
|Nov 23, 2003||JAX 10, @NYJ 13|
|Sep 29, 2002||JAX 28, NYJ 3|