Jets’ John Franklin-Myers Keeps Promise in Heartfelt Moment [LOOK]

John Franklin-Myers, Avery Williamson

Getty New York Jets defensive end John Franklin-Myers embraces with ex-teammate Avery Williamson on October 25, 2020.

Joe Douglas has gotten a lot of heat from New York Jets fans for his unwillingness to extend homegrown talent.

That’s why when versatile defensive lineman John Franklin-Myers began having a breakout start to his 2021 campaign, many supporters doubted whether he’d remain with the franchise long-term.

Then in the blink of an eye when we all least expected it, it happened. Douglas extended ‘JFM’ on a four-year contract.

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JFM on Keeping Promise to Son, Jets

Gang Green didn’t draft Franklin-Myers but they did develop him. He was also one of Douglas’ first acquisitions as general manager, a waiver claim out of Los Angeles. Now he’s a cornerstone of this Jets rebuild.

The pass-rusher is genuine to his core and he was nothing but gracious during his post-extension press conference. JFM called the deal “an honor,” adding that he was “honored to get that security and get a chance to feed [his] son and [his] kids in the future.”

Of course, the fan-favorite once made a promise to the Jets GM that involved his child. “I’ve been telling everybody and I told Joe Douglas myself, I said look man you give me this opportunity [and] I’m not going to let you down, and I meant that,” Franklin-Myers told Harrison Glaser during an interview on the Take Flight Media “Spittin’ Fire Podcast.”

“I got a son back home, I got a family to feed… I play football so he doesn’t have to work, he don’t got to play football, he don’t got to do nothing if he don’t want to,” he explained to Glaser. Now JFM has made good on that promise with $30 million of guaranteed money in the bank ($14.8 million at signing).

At the end of the presser, the football player got emotional when talking about the motivation behind his game.

Franklin-Myers was mentioning his son and how he wished he could have been there for the big career moment before everything hit him and he was overcome by tears. “We wanted to get it done before heading to London so he didn’t get a chance to be there but I just wanted to talk to him, you know I play football for… [breaks down]… I play football for him and… I just wanted to give him every opportunity.”

You could tell that the answer was from the heart and you could tell that the emotion was real. That’s why fans gravitate towards the defensive lineman, his passion and his sincerity.

If I may include a brief personal experience. JFM is the only Jets player to not only retweet several of my articles on Twitter but read them and show his appreciation. He is as authentic as they come and I could not be happier for the man.

Last word on the extension; the pass-rusher joked that he’d be willing to take certain players out to dinner with his newfound money, like the “kicker and punter,” but not his brothers on the defensive line. Those teammates’ appetites can eat you out of house and home, and Franklin-Myers has mouths to feed.

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Saleh Provides Intriguing JFM Comp

Franklin-Myers made it clear that there was a lot of “mutual interest” between the organization and his camp because of the scheme fit and the coaching staff. When head coach Robert Saleh addressed the media from London, he confirmed those beliefs.

“JFM is a stud,” the Jets HC began, “when we first got here we studied all of our players and the one guy that stood out to us was JFM.” Saleh did make sure to correct that other Jets stood out too, but that he seemed special.

“We felt like he’d be a great fit for our system and what we ask out of our defensive line, and he has done nothing but work, work, work. He’s been a tremendous leader, and then you see his play on the football field he’s absolutely dominant at times,” Saleh elaborated noting that he feels Franklin-Myers “hasn’t even scratched the surface” of his potential.

Then the coach made an intriguing comparison. “He’s kind of in the mold of Arik Armstead,” Saleh told reporters. The San Francisco 49ers defensive lineman can play on the interior or the edge, like JFM, accumulating 18.0 sacks with Saleh from 2017-2020. His breakout campaign was in 2019, with 10.0 sacks, two fumbles forced, 54 total tackles and 35 quarterback pressures.

Franklin-Myers is already having a career season with 3.0 sacks and 10 QB pressures through four starts. The hope is that he can keep it going under Saleh and Jeff Ulbrich.

“When you have guys who do things the right way, you have guys who are leaders in the locker room, and [then] they produce to his level… those are the guys that we want to pay,” Saleh stated. Rest assured Jets fans, Douglas is willing to dish out some cash, he’s just very particular about who he hands the check to.

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