Jets quarterback Chad Pennington will miss the rest of the season because of a torn right rotator cuff, the Associated Press learned last night.
Pennington's injury was confirmed by a person with knowledge of his condition, but who declined to be identified because the team had not made an official announcement.
An MRI exam showed Pennington tore his rotator cuff in Sunday's 26-20 overtime loss to Jacksonville. The NFL Network originally reported the injury, the second time Pennington has had this tear in less than a year.
Pennington was expected to visit noted orthopedist Dr. James Andrews in Alabama today.
Backup Jay Fiedler also damaged his shoulder Sunday and will be sidelined, leaving third-stringer Brooks Bollinger to play quarterback against Baltimore this weekend.
''It's frustrating and demoralizing," Pennington said. ''I worked really hard to get back to playing, putting in all the extra hours in overtime, and trying to come back to be out there on the field. When something like that happens, it really tests you. It tests your willpower, your mind and your confidence."
Bollinger, in his third season with the Jets out of Wisconsin, has appeared in just one NFL game, last year against Arizona. He replaced an injured Quincy Carter in the Jets' 13-3 win and was 5 of 9 for 60 yards.
''I'm just going out to try and execute the plays that they call with knowing that I have an understanding of how to manage a football game and what I need to do to help the team win," Bollinger said. ''I'm not trying to make it into rocket science."
Achilles' injury KO's Spikes
Buffalo's two-time Pro Bowl linebacker Takeo Spikes
, who has never missed a game due to injury in his seven-plus NFL seasons, is out for the year with a torn right Achilles' tendon.
The injury happened in the Bills' 24-16 loss to Atlanta Sunday and leaves Buffalo without its top defensive player and the unit's inspirational and physical leader.
''It's a big blow for our defense," linebacker London Fletcher said yesterday. ''However, we will still play football on Sunday. Injuries happen all the time. We've got some other guys that have to take up the slack."
The Bills (1-2) prepare to play the New Orleans Saints Sunday at San Antonio.
Spikes's agent, Todd France, said his client was flying yesterday to Birmingham, Ala., where Dr. Andrews was to perform surgery within the next two days.
Third-year veteran Angelo Crowell will make his first career start replacing Spikes.
Akers, McNabb ailing
Kicker David Akers
probably will miss Philadelphia's game at Kansas City next week because of a torn hamstring, while quarterback Donovan McNabb's
status is uncertain. Akers, who collapsed to the ground in pain after the opening kickoff, fought through the injury to make a 23-yard field goal with nine seconds left to lead the Eagles to a 23-20 victory over Oakland Sunday. McNabb played with a sore chest, strained lower abdomen, and a shin contusion. He finished with 365 yards passing and two touchdowns while throwing a career-high 52 passes . . . Cardinals quarterback Kurt Warner
will miss Arizona's game in Mexico City next week with a right groin strain. The injury promotes Josh McCown
to first string Sunday against the San Francisco 49ers, which marks the first regular-season NFL game played on foreign soil . . . 49ers defensive back Ahmed Plummer
needs arthroscopic surgery to remove a bone chip on his left ankle, sidelining him for up to six weeks . . . As expected, Tennessee Titans running back Travis Henry
was suspended for four games by the NFL for violating the league's substance abuse policy. Henry's suspension begins immediately and won't be back until Oct. 24 . . . Pro Bowl right tackle Willie Anderson
was listed as questionable for the Cincinnati Bengals' next game because of a strained back, jeopardizing his streak of 83 consecutive starts . . . Packers offensive coordinator Tom Rossley
underwent heart tests after spending the night at the hospital following a recurrence of warning signs that had sent him to the emergency room. Rossley, 59, was hospitalized before kickoff Sunday, but he checked himself out of the hospital and returned to Lambeau Field in the second quarter of Green Bay's 17-16 loss to Tampa Bay. Rossley still wasn't feeling well after the game, so the Packers sent him to back to Bellin Hospital for an overnight stay . . . Minnesota safety and special teams captain Willie Offord
will miss the rest of the season with a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee . . . Vikings linemen Bryant McKinnie
and Marcus Johnson
were arrested in connection with a scuffle at a gas station early yesterday in Minneapolis. McKinnie, Minnesota's starting left tackle, and Johnson, a second-round draft pick, are scheduled to appear in court Oct. 3 . . . Jacksonville Jaguars defensive tackle John Henderson
has been accused of domestic battery by a former girlfriend. Valerie Denise Jones
, 26, told the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office that about 2 a.m. Sept. 16, Henderson came to her apartment, kicked in the front door, grabbed her, and threw her onto the couch. When she denied his request for sex, Henderson threw her around the apartment, the report said.
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