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Top 10 New York Jets in NFL History

Updated on September 1, 2014

They've embraced the Big Apple spotlight to have its share of success. Today I rank the top 10 New York Jets of all time.

10. Al Toon

He was one the team's most underappreciated offensive players during the 80's.

A first round pick in 1985, Al Toon proved to be a consistent receiver for the team. In 1986, he was named the AFC player of the year after recording 85 receptions for 1,176 yards and 8 touchdowns. Toon's best year as a pro came in the 1988 season when he led the league with 93 receptions. Toon was forced to retire due to suffering nine concussions during his career. He finished his eight seasons with 517 receptions for 6,605 yards and 31 touchdowns.

Toon retired in 1992 as a three time pro bowler and All-Pro, and is a member of the Jets all time team. His son Nick is a wide receiver for the New Orleans Saints.

9. Nick Mangold

He has quickly become the best center playing today.

A first round pick in 2006, Nick Mangold was brought in to rebuild the Jets offensive line. Replacing Kevin Mawae at center, Mangold had a good rookie season allowing only 0.5 sacks, committed only three penalties, and made all the line calls. He was so impressive, he was considered for the rookie of the year award. He has been part of an offensive line that has started the same players for 32 games which is the longest current streak among NFL offensive lines. It is considered the best run blocking line in the league.

In his eight seasons in New York, Mangold has been a five time pro bowler and three time All-Pro. His play will allow him to be the leader of the offensive line for years to come.

8. Darrelle Revis

He has quickly established himself as the leagues best shutdown cornerback.

A first round pick in 2007, Darrelle Revis quickly drew comparisons to former pro bowl cornerback Ty Law. His skills as a cover man quickly forced teams to stay away from his side of the ball. In 2009, he led the league in defended pass with 31 and came in second in the voting for defensive player of the year. In 2011, Revis led the AFC in interceptions with four. His constant contract hold outs and 2012 knee injury ultimately led the team to trade him. In his time with the Jets, Revis recorded 98 defended passes, 19 interceptions, and scored three touchdowns.

Revis was traded to Tampa Bay before the 2013 season. In his six seasons in New York, he was a four time pro bowler, three time All-Pro, and was the 2009 AFC defensive player of the year.

7. Emerson Boozer

He is one of the leagues most forgotten running backs

A sixth round pick in 1966, Emerson Boozer chose the Jets over the NFL. His ability to block with intensity earned him a league wide reputation in the AFL. Boozer displayed talent that drew comparisons to Gale Sayers. He often broke tackles and excelled in the open field. By 1967, he led the AFL in rushing touchdowns. Boozer's work ethic further revealed itself over the next two seasons as injuries forced him to change his playing style. No longer a breakaway runner, he changed himself into more of an outstanding blocker and goal-line touchdown scorer. In 1973, Boozer scored the first regular season over time touchdown in NFL history.

Boozer retired after 1975 rushing for 5,135 yards and 52 touchdowns in 10 seasons. He was a two time pro bowler, a 1967 All-Pro, and Super Bowl champion.

6. Wayne Chrebet

"Mr. Third Down" was a fan favorite for the Jets franchise.

Chrebet worked his way up from 11th on the depth chart as an undrafted rookie, to making the team and become one of the greatest possession receivers in history. In fact Chrebet had more catches in his first two seasons than any receiver in league history. That's impressive enough when you considered the fact that the Jets were coached by Rich Kotite in that time.

Unlike former teammate Keyshawn Johnson, he let his play do the talking. And when Johnson left for Tampa Bay, Chrebet caught the winning touchdown against the Bucs. 379 of his 580 catches were third down conversions. He retired as the team's second leading receiver and third leading receiver for undrafted wide outs. He may not have been name all-pro or a pro bowler, but his legacy lives on in New York.

5. Matt Snell

He should have been the MVP of Super Bowl III.

A first round pick in 1964, Matt Snell quickly established himself as the AFL's top power fullback. As a rookie, Snell rushed for 945 yards and won the AFL rookie of the year. His defining moment came in Super Bowl III when the Jets played the NFL Champion Baltimore Colts. Although slowed by knee injuries, Snell was the key player in the Jets ball control offense during the 16-7 upset of the Colts. He carried the ball 30 times for a then Super Bowl record 121 yards and scored the Jets only touchdown in the game. During his career, Snell was well known for his rushing, but also became an important part of the Jets pass blocking scheme. Towards the end of his career, he became one of the early 3rd down backs primarily because he was so good at protecting Joe Namath.

Snell retired after 1972 as a 1969 All-AFL, three time AFL All Star, and Super Bowl champion.

4. Joe Klecko

He was the leader of the "New York Sack Exchange."

A sixth round pick in 1977, Joe Klecko and his teammates formed one of the leagues best defensive lines. In 1981, the unit recorded 66 sacks including a league-leading 20.5 by Klecko. Whatever the team asked of him, he performed to his highest ability. He spent time in his career in both 4-3 and 3-4 defenses play defensive tackle, defensive end, and nose tackle.Klecko is one of just two men in league history to make the pro bowl at three different positions.

Klecko spent his final season in Indianapolis before retiring after 1988. He was a four time pro bowler, two time All-Pro, and the 1981 defensive player of the year.

3. Curtis Martin

He is one of the most productive running backs in league history.

After spending three seasons in New England, Curtis Martin was signed by the Jets in 1998. In his seven seasons with the Jets, he missed only one game. In his first year with the team, Martin gained 182 yards from scrimmage and scored two touchdowns against the Jaguars in a Jets playoff win. In his 2004, he became the oldest player in league history to win the rushing title at age 31. He was forced to retire in 2006 when a knee injury prevented him from providing the same level of production he had in his career. He retired as the leagues fourth all time leading rusher with 14,101 yards 90 touchdowns.

In his 11 seasons, Martin five time pro bowler, three time All-Pro, and twice led the AFC in rushing. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2012.

2. Don Maynard

He is still seen as the best wide receiver in team history.

After spending two seasons with the Giants and in the CFL, Don Maynard became the first player to sign with the New York Titans in 1960. In his first season, he and teammate Art Powell became the first professional wide receiver tandem to each gain over 1,000 yards receiving in a season. Maynard and Joe Namath formed one of the best passing combinations in league history. In 1967, he caught 1,434 of Namath's historic 4,007 passing yards. The receiving yards were a career high for Maynard and he led the league in the category. He also had 71 receptions, 10 touchdowns, and averaged 20.2 yards per catch. Maynard finished his career with 633 receptions for 11,834 yards and 88 touchdowns. His 18.7 yards per catch is the highest for anyone with at least 600 receptions.

Maynard spent his final season with the Cardinals and Rams before retiring. He was four time AFL All Star, four time All-AFL, and Super Bowl champion. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1987.

1. Joe Namath

I know. I've already called "Broadway Joe" the most overrated player in history, but he is the first player that comes to mind when you think of the Jets.

In 1965, Joe Namath became the first high profile player to choose the AFL over the NFL and signed a then record contract of $427,000 over three years. In 1967, He became the first professional quarterback to pass for 4,000 yards in a season when he threw for 4,007 yards in a 14 game season. Namath was plagued with knee injuries through much of his career and underwent four pioneering knee operations. Sometimes he had to have his knee drained at halftime so that he could finish a game. Namath was named MVP of Super Bowl III, the win made him the first quarterback to start and win a national championship game in college, and to start and win a major professional league championship, and a Super Bowl. He is most famous for his comment "We’re going to win the game. I guarantee it."prior to Super Bowl III.

Namath spent his final season with the Rams before retiring in 1977. He was a four time AFL All Star and All-AFL, a 1972 pro bowler, two time AFL MVP, Andy Super Bowl champion. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1985.


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