New York Jets: Top Players to Wear Number 10


Jul 27, 2013; Cortland, NY, USA; General view of a New York Jets helmet during training camp at SUNY Cortland. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

As we move along in the off-season, with a bit of a lull before the NFL Combine begins, it is always fun to take a look back. It’s fun to debate top players in team history at various positions, and top players to wear jersey numbers. We are going to start that tonight with our beloved New York Jets.

We will take a look at the top players at the jersey number, and you will have the opportunity to vote at the end of the post for your choice. We want to hear who you think is the top in Jets history.

Tonight, we are going to discuss the number 10. It doesn’t have a deep history, but there are three players that deserve the nomination, and here they are.

Next: Pat Ryan

PAT RYAN: The gentleman to my left in the above picture is former Jets wide receiver Wesley Walker. He caught passes from our first nominee from the late 70’s into the 80’s. Pat Ryan joined the Jets in 1978, but picked up the number 10 jersey in 1981, wearing it until his retirement in 1989.

Here are his stats, paying attention to his time wearing the number ten:


Ryan didn’t have much opportunity to start back then, sitting behind Ken O’Brien. But when he did he made the most of it. Take a look at his playoff game logs, specifically the first playoff game in 1986:


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In the wild card game against Kansas City in 1986, Ryan was able to spark a Jets offense that hadn’t won a game in six weeks, which was a credit to his ability to stay sharp while out of the lineup.

Next: Santonio Holmes

Sep 22, 2013; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets wide receiver Santonio Holmes (10) scores a touchdown in the fourth quarter against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

SANTONIO HOLMES: Sorry guys, I have to include him, as he did wear the number recently, with some success.

Holmes came over to the Jets in 2010 to complete the group we knew as the “Flight Boys”, with Braylon Edwards and Jerricho Cotchery. We know the way it ended, the on-field blowups, being benched in Miami, …etc. But, in his first two years here in New York, Santonio did post 14 TD’s. He had the unfortunate “Lisfranc” injury in 2012, and never returned to form, but he did play well in his first two seasons.

Nobody will forget the catch he made in the corner of the endzone in the divisional playoff game up in New England. Holmes in nominee number two.

Next: Chad Pennington

Nov 9, 2014; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets wide receiver T.J. Graham (10) avoids Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback Brice McCain (25) and scores a touchdown during the first quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports

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No, the final choice is not T.J. Graham, as seen above, it is former quarterback Chad Pennington. Pennington wore the number for his entire career with the Jets from 2000-2007. Pennington is a player that incites mixed feelings within the fan base, but his 66% completion rate is certainly something we miss these days, isn’t it?

Yes he had injury problems. But, each time Pennington played the entire season, the Jets made the playoffs. And he was on the way to being a great starter, throwing for 22 touchdowns versus only six interceptions in 2002. But, injuries robbed Pennington of his arm strength, and he was eventually let go in favor of Brett Favre.

He has had some terrific playoff performances, specifically in 2002 and 2004, take a look:


These are my nominees, now it’s up to you. Vote below for who you feel is the best Jets player to wear the number ten, and comment in the comments section:

Who is the best New York Jets player to ever wear the number ten?

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Next: Reviewing the Offensive Line