Jets Now Left With Gaping Hole in Their Offense

Jets fans disgusted with Brett Favre's performance at the end of last season should be careful what they wish for.

Favre's retirement frees up valuable salary-cap space for the Jets, but it leaves them with very little experience at the most important position in football.

Favre's retirement leaves the Jets with unproven quarterbacks Kellen Clemens, Brett Ratliff and Eric Ainge on the roster. Clemens, a 2nd-round pick in 2006, has failed to make his mark with the team in three seasons, throwing 5 touchdowns and 11 interceptions in limited action. Ratliff and Ainge have never taken a snap during a regular season game, although Ratliff played well in preseason action last summer.

No. 4's retirement will clear $13 million in space for the Jets, which is good news for a team in one of the worst salary-cap situations in the league. The Jets may have to use some of that freedom to pick up a veteran free agent QB like Byron Leftwich or the recently waived Jeff Garcia.

New England's Matt Cassel was the top free agent quarterback out there, but the Patriots stamped the franchise tag on him Sunday. They'll either hold onto him as insurance in case Tom Brady's knee does not heal properly, or they'll trade him to a team for draft picks. That is, any team besides the rival Jets.

The Jets may opt to draft a quarterback in April's draft, but it's unlikely they'd land either Georgia's Matthew Stafford or USC's Mark Sanchez with the 17th pick in the first round. Even if they could, the chances are slim that a defensive coach like Rex Ryan would use his first pick with the organization on an offensive player.

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