We have been asked to post on the next legend to go into the Jets Ring of Honor. The Jets introduced their Ring of Honor in 2010 when they opened MetLife Stadium. Let's talk about current candidates to go into the Ring of Honor once their playing days are over.
These players would make it even if they retired today.
Nick Mangold: I am putting Mangold first because he is the guy on the current roster who most embodies being a great Jet. When I say that, I take into account on field performance, intangibles, love for the franchise, etc. He has been one of the league's top centers since the day he stepped on the field. He has been remarkably durable and tough. He has been a leader. He has represented the team with class on and off the field. Nick is a Jets legend.
Darrelle Revis: Forget about the contract acrimony. Forget about the two year absence, including the time with New England. Revis has put together the best Jets career since Curtis Martin. His 2009 season might have been the greatest a cornerback has put together in modern Jets history when you factor in production, difficulty of assignments, and the pass happy rules of today's NFL. He made his fifth Pro Bowl as a Jet this season, and by all accounts his intense practice habits make everybody work harder.
David Harris: He has been under the radar for most of his career, but Harris has been a steady and productive force in the middle of the defense for close to a decade. He is going to be back with the Jets next season and is climbing up the team's all-time tackles list.
D'Brickashaw Ferguson: I think D'Brickashaw has been underappreciated. The toughest position to find a quality player in the NFL is quarterback. The second toughest is left tackle. It is also arguably the second most important. Ferguson has manned the position admirably for the last ten seasons without missing a game. At his peak, he was one of the top tackles in football. At his worst, he is still serviceable.
On Their Way
These guys aren't quite there yet, but they will be if they continue on their current pace.
Muhammad Wilkerson: Wilkerson has grown into one of the best defensive linemen in the game. You can line him up anywhere. You can have him play the run or the pass. He will succeed. He has been a second team All Pro in two of the last three seasons. If the Jets can work out a long-term deal with him, Mo is going to go down as the best defensive lineman this team has had since Klecko.
Sheldon Richardson: ...unless Sheldon Richardson outperforms him. When Sheldon has been on the field in his first three seasons, he has been a nightmare for opposing offenses to deal with. A 300 pound man should not be able to move as quickly as Richardson does. Put Richardson and Wilkerson together, and you have something terrifying.
Eric Decker: He does not have as strong of a case as the other guys, but he is only going to be 29 at the start of next season. He still probably has a number of productive years in front of him.
It is unlikely these guys would make it but possible under the right circumstances.
Calvin Pace: Pace hasn't been the dominant force one would expect from a Ring of Honor player. The last few seasons, he has been pretty mediocre. He keeps sticking around, though, and compiles stats. If he could stick around another year or two, he might get to third on the team's all-time sack list. It probably won't happen, but he at least might end up in the discussion.
Brandon Marshall: Marshall's age probably means his Jets career will not be long. There is a real love affair between him and this fan base, though. If the Jets could somehow win the Super Bowl in Marshall's time with the team, that might be enough to push him over the top.
I'm not going to include young guys like Leonard Williams or Calvin Pryor. It is simply too soon to project them out that far. They have not done enough to say they are legitimate candidates yet.
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