By MARK CANNIZZARO
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December 30, 2004 -- JET NOTES
Herman Edwards has done nothing to cool the heat that's been turned up on his offensive coordinator Paul Hackett.

Edwards, asked yesterday to assess Hackett's performance since Chad Pennington returned from his injury, said: "The offense has been kind of up and down. That's what it's been, it's been kind of up and down. We have to be more consistent with it. It's just been kind of up and down."

Asked how Hackett was handling the recent onslaught of public criticism, Edwards said, "I think he's oblivious to it, because he's in his little shell up there [in his office] and doing his deal."

Hackett, who last spoke after the Jets' victory over the Seahawks two weeks ago, declined interview requests through a team spokesman yesterday.

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Though Jets' DE John Abraham (knee) is listed as questionable for Sunday's game, Edwards yesterday acknowledged that his best defensive player won't be ready this week and that the hope is to have him back if the Jets make the playoffs.

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For the Rams, who didn't practice yesterday because they played Monday night, G Adam Timmerman (knee) and LB Drew Wahlroos (knee) are questionable. TE Cam Cleeland (concussion), DE Bryce Fisher (ankle), CB Travis Fisher (knee), RB Joey Goodspeed (shoulder) and RB Steven Jackson (knee) are listed as probable.

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Despite a recent report that said Jason Ferguson was on the verge of inking a contract extension, the nose tackle yesterday denied that any deal is imminent and said that nothing is even close to being done. "No," Ferguson said. "There's honestly nothing going on. Honestly."

. . . Backup QB Quincy Carter sat out practice yesterday with an illness. He's listed as probable.