As we approach the season, we are going to count down the history of Jets jersey numbers along with some of the notable players to wear each number. Today we will look at number 96.
It should come as no surprise that the all-time team leader in AV among those who have worn number 96 is Muhammad Wilkerson. Wilkerson outpaces second place Ron Stallworth by a mile.
The Jets drafted Wilkerson in the late first round of the 2011 NFL Draft out of Temple. He was an immediate starter and did a quality job as a rookie. His second year was a breakout year as he consistently dominated his assignments, lining up all over the defensive line. His third year was when people started to take notice as he registered ten sacks for the first time. By 2015, you could make a strong case he was the most valuable player on the team not named Brandon Marshall.
The two sides have been unable to work out a new contract. There are indications the Jets might not want to pay a ton with a lot of young talent on the line surrounding Wilkerson. No matter what happens, Wilkerson has been a major success for the Jets. There are not many linemen in the league who could succeed lining up anywhere the way Wilkerson has.
I think you could build a strong argument that Wilkerson is the best Jets defensive lineman since Joe Klecko.