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NY Jets draft countdown: The greatest 146th overall picks of all time

Eric Barton, NY Jets, 146 Draft Pick
Eric Barton, New York Jets, Getty Images

The 146th overall slot has been surprisingly packed with talent

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.

Our countdown carries on with the 146th overall pick, where the Jets are stationed for the second consecutive season. Prior to their selection of Jamien Sherwood in 2021, we revisited the historic arrivals of Stefon Diggs, George Kittle, and others, but the choice has proven far more fruitful than one could’ve anticipated.

1947: DB Tommy James, Detroit

As a Canton native and Ohio State alum, Tommy James was destined to make Buckeye State football history one way or another.

A brief foray with the NFL’s Lions ended in injury, leading James to sign with the Cleveland Browns, then members of the All-America Football Conference. In Cleveland, James became a defensive star in an undefeated effort that ended with a win over the Buffalo Bills in the AAFC title game, where he had two interceptions in the 49-7 blowout.

James later earned three NFL titles when the Browns moved to the league in 1950, notably intercepting nine passes on the way to the first. He had another championship interception against the Los Angeles Rams and also served as the holder on Lou Groza’s game-winning field goal.

1963: G/T Ray Schoenke, Dallas

Ray Schoenke was drafted by the Dallas Cowboys but wound up being a bigger contributor for their rivals from Washington.

After an injury ended a two-year Cowboy career, the Southern Methodist All-American made his way to the nation’s capital, where he became an offensive staple on the line. Schoenke was named to the Redskins’ 50th-anniversary team in 1987 and was later inducted into the second-ever class of the Polynesian Football Hall of Fame, which also hosts names like Kevin Mawae, Junior Seau, and Troy Polamalu.

1989: P Chris Mohr, Tampa Bay

One of Alabama’s longest-tenured NFL representatives, Chris Mohr originally made a professional name for himself with the World League’s Montreal Machine before spending a decade as the Bills’ punter, partaking in three of their four visits to the Super Bowl in the early 1990s.

At 239 games, Mohr is by far the leader in career appearances among players selected in the 146th slot (Trent Cole is closest at 176).

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1999: LB Eric Barton, Oakland

Jets fans may remember Barton for one of the most infamous penalties in team history: a late, fourth-quarter takedown of Drew Brees that nearly derailed an upset Wild Card victory in San Diego (the Jets eventually won the game in overtime).

But Barton created a serviceable 12-year NFL tenure that took him to Oakland, New York, and Cleveland, notably breaking the century mark in tackles five times.

Having recovered from a potentially fatal liver issue in 2017, Barton has now embarked on a new victorious mission, raising funds for Cedars-Sinai Medical Center’s Liver Disease and Transplant Center through an athletic wear company known as Legends.

2008: FB Jerome Felton, Detroit

A relatively rare NFL entrant from Furman University, Jerome Felton built a nine-season career for himself through not only a strong blocking ability (notably paving the way for Adrian Peterson’s 2,097-yard season in Minnesota in 2012) but also through his ability to earn tough yardage: of the 105 touches in Felton’s NFL career, 44 went for first downs.

Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffJMags

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2 years ago

I was at that playoff game. Very disappointing. When the Jets come to Northern California, I always go. There is a Jets bar in SF called the Wreck Room. It is a great place to watch a game. Whenever the Jets score, they ring a ships bell. The place goes crazy. Enjoy the draft everyone!