Kellen Clemens Dealt Lowest Blow in Brett Favre Injury Conspiracy

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Kellen Clemens Dealt Lowest Blow in Brett Favre Injury Conspiracy
(Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

Someone said there's a dead horse around here that still needs to learn who's boss.

It's no secret that Kellen Clemens never stood a chance against rookie Mark Sanchez in this summer's quarterback competition. But fans should wonder as to the true depth of the rabbit hole that houses the former second-round draft pick.

The book was finally written on Clemens Thursday when New York Jets general manager Mike Tannenbaum confirmed Brett Favre's claims of a smudged injury report in 2009.

The Minnesota Vikings quarterback discussed his torn biceps with the media — an injury he blames for the Gang Green collapse of 2008 — forcing the NFL to investigate the Jets for not disclosing Favre's condition. As per league rules, the torn tendon should have been included on a weekly injury report.

Tannenbaum says the team did not disclose the 39-year-old's status because he never sought treatment for the tear. Instead, Favre opted for cortisone shots to relieve the discomfort.

That's where putting one and one together gets particularly ugly for Clemens.

While Favre claims he was "receptive to sitting," Tannenbaum maintains that the decision to stay with Favre was reached collectively.

With Favre's support, former coach Eric Mangini, former quarterback coach Brian Daboll, offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer, and Tannenbaum all believed that an older, injured QB gave the Jets "the best chance to win."

There goes that phrase for Clemens again. First-year coach Rex Ryan echoed that statement when he named Sanchez the starter last month.

It's like the, "it's not you, it's me" of making quarterback depth charts.

Tannenbaum's inadvertent confession could be the most telling detail in a Clemens era that never was.

Being dumped hurts, but being a healthy veteran who hopes to play, only to be told you don't give your team the best chance to win, says everything and nothing at the same time.

Using a gentle letdown stings worse than the truth — mainly because there's no honesty in the scapegoat. The truth is that it is "you." It always is.

The decision to play an injured Favre over his healthy backup bears a striking resemblance to the Jets' 2005 season when two quarterbacks were lost in one game.

Former quarterbacks Chad Pennington and Jay Fiedler suffered season-ending shoulder injuries in Week Four against the Jacksonville Jaguars. After Fiedler's injury, ex-coach Herm Edwards asked an injured Pennington to finish the game over a fresh third-string QB in Brooks Bollinger.

Edwards' hesitation to support Bollinger continued when he called 43-year-old Vinny Testaverde off his couch to start the very next week.

Would that make Clemens the new Bollinger?

No one should have expected the Jets to confess their lack of faith in Clemens, but fans have to wonder about the length of the string used to pull him along all these years.

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