[Editor's Note: This is as good a time as any to bring this post back, especially in light of the upcoming game against the Buffalo Bills.]
I wondered out loud yesterday about the origin of the "Home of the Jets" chant, which we here all loved so much that we voted on making it our tagline. I was certain that FB Tony Richardson didn't bring it to New York, although perhaps someone else may have. I theorized that it had something to do with Gang Green not having their own stadium. It turns out that was wrong, too.
I finally learned the origin of the chant last night, but I certainly didn't expect it would be coming from the man himself, former Jets C Kevin Mawae and currently president of the NFLPA, who was kind enough to email me with the explanation:
In 1998 the Jets went to Kansas City to play the Chiefs. The game was a hard fought one that went to the wire. The Jets won the game on a John Hall field goal at the end of the game. The Chief's fans are known for saying "home of the chiefs" at the end of the National Anthem...and I must say, it's pretty cool!
Well, once we were in the locker room after Bill Parcell's post game speech, the team was called up for the final team break down at which point someone (don't know who) started yelling "and the home..." at this point the rest of the team chimed in..."of the, JETS". We did it every game we won after that win...
the next week we went on to play the Buffalo Bills...very memorable because as I was enjoying the win coming onto the plane, Parcells asked me why I was so happy. He went on to tell me that he didn't bring me to the Jets to beat KC, but to block Ted Washington, who would be matched up against the following week.
Anyways, we went 12-4 that year and that is how the "Home of the Jets" chant started.
Of course, that next week, Kevin and the Jets beat Ted Washington and the Bills.
I love hearing about this stuff just as much as I love watching the games. It makes sense that it didn't start farther back than that, because a game-winning chant wouldn't have survived the 1996 season.
Thanks again to Kevin for providing the answer. So it wasn't some feel-good story of a former Chief bringing it to New York. Rather, it was Gang Green brashly taking something and making it their own. Let's hope for a great performance by the team today, and hopefully at the end of the game, we along with the players will all be chanting, "and the home of the... JETS!!!"