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Rams coach Jeff Fisher admits to having interest in Mark Sanchez

By Ryan Wilson | CBSSports.com

Mark Sanchez could get a fresh start in St. Louis. (USATSI)
Mark Sanchez could get a fresh start in St. Louis. (USATSI)

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The Jets released Mark Sanchez last week in a move that surprised no one, but he might not be out of work long. Rams coach Jeff Fisher admitted Sunday that he has interest in the former first-round pick out of USC who struggled with consistency in 2011 and 2012 before landing on injured reserve last season.

"I'd say that there is interest," Fisher told USAToday.com at the league's owners meetings. "I can't say how much. But there certainly would be interest. I don't have a backup with experience on the roster right now.''

And that's Sanchez's reality right now: He's an NFL backup. The Rams have Sam Bradford, who suffered a torn ACL in October, and inexperienced Austin Davis. Kellen Clemens started in Bradford's absence last season but signed with the Chargers earlier this month.

The Jets traded up in the first round of the 2009 NFL Draft to take Sanchez, who was immediately installed as the starter and had early success thanks in part to a strong running game and a dominating defense. New York went to back-to-back AFC Championship games in Sanchez's first two seasons, but once the defense slipped and the running game struggled, so too did Sanchez. In 2011 and 2012, he combined for 36 interceptions and 16 fumbles, and last April the Jets drafted Geno Smith in the second round.

After Sanchez suffered a preseason shoulder injury, he was out of the quarterback competition, and his career in New York was effectively over. But he has a history with Rams offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer, who served in that same capacity with the Jets during Sanchez's first two seasons, and that could also facilitate a St. Louis reunion.

"Brian had a good relationship with Mark,'' Fisher said. "He's just learning. He's been to the AFC Championship game a couple of times, so he's been there.''

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