Franchise staples, Super Bowl champions, and a modern Day 2 steal have been chosen in the New York Jets’ third-round slot.
The only NFL draft tradition more enduring than current mocks is revisiting the selections of the past.
Jet X looks back on the 10 spots where the New York Jets are slated to select in the coming 2021 NFL draft and highlights the best players chosen in each role.
The countdown continues with the 66th overall pick, the Jets’ regularly scheduled third-round choice …
• 5 Pro Bowls
• 5x All-Pro (3x First-Team)
• Rams' 6th Round pick in 1952 out of Pacific
• Original Dallas Cowboy (1960), first left guard in team history
• First Cavalry US Army, 1946-48 pic.twitter.com/WLqIz1xmuT
— Kevin Gallagher (@KevG163) September 5, 2020
1952: G Duane Putnam, LA Rams
An Army veteran turned University of the Pacific star, Duane Putnam played eight seasons with the Rams, appearing in five Pro Bowls.
He’d later go on to become one of the first linemen for the Dallas Cowboys, chosen during their 1960 expansion draft. Putnam played two more seasons before entering coaching.
1961: DL Earl Faison, Detroit
Earl Faison was drafted by the NFL’s Detroit Lions in the fifth round but opted to play for the AFL’s San Diego Chargers when they chose him in the first instead. He lasted only six seasons in professional football but made the most of them through six All-Star appearances and four All-AFL first-team nominations.
Faison played a major role in the Chargers’ dominant 1963 season, winning 12 games including a 51-10 destruction of the Boston Patriots in the AFL title game.
1970: S Charlie Waters, Dallas
Charlie Waters played a big role in the Cowboys’ ascension to America’s Team, manning the secondary next to Cliff Harris. He would play a dozen seasons in Dallas, earning 41 interceptions and partaking in five Super Bowls (winning two). Waters continues to leave a major mark on the NFL postseason, as his nine interceptions are tied for the most in league history with Ed Reed, Ronnie Lott, and Bill Simpson.
In the 1978-79 NFC title game, Waters had two interceptions, a fumble recovery, and shared a sack with Hollywood Henderson in the Cowboys’ 28-0 dismantling of Los Angeles.
1997: CB Ronde Barber, Tampa Bay
Though better known in the metropolitan area as “Tiki’s brother,” Ronde Barber still managed to become one of the NFL staples of the early new century. En route to appearing on the All-2000s Team accumulated by the league, as well as earning a ring in the 37th Super Bowl, Barber became one of just two players in NFL history to earn at least 40 interceptions and 20 sacks (the other being Super Bowl 37 co-combatant Charles Woodson).
Barber also holds the record for the long consecutive games streak earned by a defensive back at 215.
2020: RB Antonio Gibson, Washington
The Washington Football Team struggled with quarterback injuries but their offense was able to earn a division title thanks to the efforts of Antonio Gibson and others. The Memphis alum led all freshman rushers with 11 touchdowns, tallying 1,042 yards from scrimmage.
Gibson entered the national spotlight during Washington’s Thanksgiving win in Dallas, becoming the first rookie to score three Turkey Day touchdowns since Randy Moss.
Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffJMags