2023 could be the year of the New York Jets.
A lot of experts believe that is a proper realistic launching pad for the team to get into the playoff mix. However, there is an additional reason next year could be a special one for the fans of the green and white.
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Magic Is in the Air
Only two long-time contributors to the Jets organization have been inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame since 2014:
- Winston Hill (class of 2020)
- Kevin Mawae (class of 2019)
It is worth noting that there have been plenty of players that have had a cup of coffee with the Jets that have been enshrined during that same time span:
- Alan Faneca (class of 2021)
- Steve Atwater (class of 2020)
- Ty Law (class of 2019)
- Ed Reed (class of 2019)
- Jason Taylor (class of 2017)
- LaDainian Tomlinson (class of 2017)
- Ron Wolf (2015)
In 2023 one of, if not the greatest Jets of all time will be eligible to be enshrined in Canton, Ohio: cornerback Darrelle Revis.
The former Pittsburgh product is heralded as one of the best cover corners of all time and he has plenty of public backing as a first-ballot hall of famer.
Klecko is one of 12 finalists in the senior category. Coming up on August 16 there will be a virtual meeting of the minds featuring the senior committee. During that zoom call, the group of selectors will be forced to whittle down this list to a final three.
Those three wouldn’t be enshrined quite yet, they would then ascend to the next level of the approval process. Cimini called that discussion a mere “formality” and that whoever is selected for the next phase will inevitably be enshrined into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
Make Some History
If all of that comes to fruition the Jets could make another round of history.
Cimini noted in his column that the Jets could be “chosen” to participate in the 2023 Hall of Fame game. That is the first preseason game of the calendar and officially kicks off football being back each fall.
Cimini notes that the Jets haven’t played in a Hall of Fame game since 1992.
There is no exact formula on who is selected and why for the HOF game, however, there is a correlation. Normally the two teams that are selected have some ties to players that are involved in that year’s class.
For example, Tony Boselli finally got in for the Jacksonville Jaguars (their first draft pick ever), and guess who played in the game this year?
Their opponent, the Las Vegas Raiders, also had a former member of the team enshrined (Cliff Branch). Coincidence? I think not.
This historic Jets class featuring both a potential first-ballot guy and someone that has been long overdue could be the right recipe to get Gang Green back in the HOF game in 2023.
The Hall of Fame is incentivized to involve teams that will already have fans present for the festivities. If fans are coming to see their favorite players inducted, it would make sense for them to stay for a game their team is then playing in.