We are back with the last part of our trip down memory lane in jersey numbers. Starting with #99 and going backwards, we have been looking back at Jets’ history, and remembering jersey numbers worn by memorable players on the team. Here are the previous installments:
JERSEY NUMBER: 24
MEMORABLE PLAYERS TO WEAR: Darrelle Revis, Freeman McNeil
No matter how we feel about Darrelle Revis’ ego, there is nothing that we can question about his ability as a player. He is the shutdown corner to end all shutdown corners. He takes one side of the field and eliminates it. He not only is a shoo-in Hall of Famer, but is arguably the best corner ever to play the game, and is in the top 5 players ever to wear the Green and White.
Anyone who remembers the 1980s knows that jersey #24 has a history on the offensive side of the football as well. Freeman McNeil wore the number, and was one of the Jets top weapons from the 80’s. Every season he was in the league, from 1981-1992, Freeman averaged 4 yards per carry, one of few to accomplish the feat. He retired as the team’s all time rushing leader, until the guy we are about to talk about passed him. But that doesn’t diminish the history of the great #24.
JERSEY NUMBER: 28
MEMORABLE PLAYER TO WEAR: Curtis Martin
The constants of life? Death, taxes, and Curtis Martin rushing for 1,000 yards. I don’t have to tell all of you, you know how great he was. Maybe he competes with Emmitt for the all time record if it wasn’t for the knee injury that cut short Martin’s career. 10 straight 1,000 yard seasons? It certainly is no surprise that he has a bust in Canton, although it was a year too late for my taste. Should have been first ballot.
JERSEY NUMBER: 13
MEMORABLE PLAYER TO WEAR: Don Maynard
Hall of Famer Don Maynard was as good as it got. One of few players to play their entire AFL career with one team, played with the Titans/Jets from 1960-1972. He actually played one year with the Giants before coming to Shea to play his games for the Titans. Here are his career stats:
He averaged of 18 yards per catch, which was the highest average of any receiver with over 600 receptions. Don Maynard, a well deserving Hall of Famer.
JERSEY NUMBER: 12
MEMORABLE PLAYER TO WEAR: Joe Namath
How could I complete this list without including Broadway Joe? What he meant to the team, and the league, is beyond description. He brought us our only Super Bowl title, and his play forced the NFL-AFL merger. Oh yes, he also guaranteed we would win that Super Bowl.
He is about as memorable as they come.
HONORABLE MENTION: #73, Joe Klecko. #90, Dennis Byrd.