New York Jets draft countdown gets underway with the Jets’ final pick at No. 163
The New York Jets are set to come to Las Vegas’ NFL Draft podium nine times between April 28 and 30. In celebration and anticipation, Jets X-Factor looks back at the finest names chosen in their respective current slots.
We begin at the back of the order with the 163rd overall pick, a fifth-round selection gained through the Jets’ 2020 trade of Avery Williamson to the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Jets' Bake Turner hauls one in against Falcons' Ken Reaves during an AFL-NFL preseason game at Legion Field, Birmingham, AL, 8/23/1968. pic.twitter.com/gS7f2ciudD
— Kevin Gallagher (@KevG163) February 10, 2019
1962: WR Bake Turner, Baltimore
Don Maynard is the first in franchise history to pull it off, but Bake Turner is, literally speaking, the first New York “Jet” to register a 1,000-yard season, doing so in the first year away from the “Titans” branding in 1963.
For his trouble, Turner was bestowed the Team MVP Award and went to the AFL All-Star Game. He’d later partake in the Jets’ championship run that ended with a win over the team that drafted him.
In his lone season with the Colts, Turner produced one of the most unusual statlines in NFL history, one that featured an average of 111.0 yards per reception. His only reception went for a 74-yard touchdown. The remaining 37 yards came when he took a lateral the matching distance, the reception itself to delivery man RC Owens.
— ᑭᖇO ᖴOOTᗷᗩᒪᒪ ᒍOᑌᖇᑎᗩᒪ 🏈 (@NFL_Journal) September 16, 2021
1964: DE Larry Hand, Jets
Larry Hand was, technically speaking, a metropolitan selection in the AFL Draft, but opted to play with the NFL’s Detroit Lions instead. It denied the New Jersey native an opportunity to make a professional impact in the tri-state area, but he nonetheless managed to make a name for himself in the Motor City, retroactively earning 62.5 sacks over 13 seasons.
Hand was awarded the key to the city of Butler, NJ in the midst of his final NFL seasons, honored by his high school locale.
The #Bengals' ballhawking cornerback and electric punt returner…
Lemar Parrish, 1971
— Kevin Gallagher (@KevG163) February 12, 2022
1970: DB Lemar Parrish, Cincinnati
Parrish was an afterthought out of Division II Lincoln (MO) but immediately introduced himself to the national stage in a dominant way. The defender earned 17 interceptions over his first three seasons and led the league with an 18.8-yard average punt return in his fifth campaign.
A career that featured 47 total interceptions and 13 scores (five earned through special teams) also featured stops in Washington and Buffalo and Parrish would eventually return to Lincoln to serve as the football team’s head coach for six seasons (2004-09).
— J.Achtziger (@Sluricain72) July 15, 2021
1978: DE Doug Betters, Miami
After spending his collegiate career between Montana and Nevada, Betters joined the Dolphins in time to become one of the “Killer B’s” South Beach showcased in the early 1980s. He took advantage of the sack’s earliest years as an official stat, earning 30 over the 1983 and 1984 seasons. The former effort, which saw him put up 16 takedowns, earned Betters the Associated Press’ Defensive Player of the Year Award.
A two-time Super Bowl participant, Betters suffered a spinal cord injury in 1998 but life has been anything but confining, as he has been an active contributor to numerous charities supporting similar cases.
Reshad Jones takes a interception to the house against the Titans! pic.twitter.com/snXPogK71p
— Wlips (@XavienPickSix) June 8, 2020
2010: S Reshad Jones, Miami
Another tenured Dolphins defender rounds out the list of famous 163rds, as Jones went on to spend a decade in the Miami secondary after arriving from Georgia.
Having earned 28 takeaways in his career (including 21 interceptions), Jones was sure to make the most of them, scoring six touchdowns en route to two Pro Bowls. Though well-accoladed otherwise (named one of the NFL’s top 100 players by his peers after the 2015 season), Jones saw the latter portions of his career derailed by injury, playing only four games in his last outing to date in 2019.
Other notable 163rd picks:
- 1966: DT Mike Tilleman, Minnesota
- 1988: DT Shawn Lee, Tampa Bay
- 2013: OT Jordan Mills, Chicago
- 2017: LB Matt Milano, Buffalo
- 2019: P Jake Bailey, New England
Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffJMags