Boller, Ravens outplay Clemens and Jets, 20-13
BALTIMORE – In a duel of backup quarterbacks, Kyle Boller’s experience prevailed over Kellen Clemens’ exuberance.
Boller threw for 185 yards and two touchdowns Sunday, and the Baltimore Ravens overcame a late charge by Clemens and the New York Jets in a 20-13 victory.
Making his first NFL start, Clemens cut a 20-3 deficit to seven points in the fourth quarter and took the Jets (1-1) to the Baltimore 7 before Ray Lewis intercepted a deflected pass in the end zone with 1:04 left to preserve the win.
Clemens replaced Chad Pennington, who injured his right ankle in the opener against New England. Although coach Eric Mangini’s final decision on his starter didn’t come until Sunday, Clemens spoke excitedly during the week about the prospect of running the New York offense.
Unfortunately, his debut came against a blitzing defense that ranked No. 1 in the NFL last year. Playing in his third game since being selected in the second round of the 2006 draft, Clemens threw two interceptions but went 19-for-37 for 260 yards — 176 of them in the fourth quarter.
It was 20-13 when a 50-yard completion got the Jets to the Baltimore 20 just before the two-minute warning. Justin McCareins dropped a potential touchdown pass at the 5 with 1:55 left, and three plays later, Clemens was short on a pass to Laveranues Coles in the end zone.
Lewis’ interception came on a pass that glanced off McCareins’ hands.
Boller replaced Steve McNair, who hurt his groin in Baltimore’s season-opening loss to Cincinnati. It was Boller’s first start since 2005, but the 35th in a career that began in 2003.
He went 23-for-35 without an interception. Boller’s touchdown throws to Willis McGahee and Todd Heap provided Baltimore (1-1) with a 17-3 halftime lead.