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Aaron Rodgers Injury: Eight Reasons Why Jets Might Be Cursed Since Winning Super Bowl III With Joe Namath | TheSportsDay Aaron Rodgers Injury: Eight Reasons Why Jets Might Be Cursed Since Winning Super Bowl III With Joe Namath | TheSportsDay

Aaron Rodgers injury: Eight reasons why Jets might be cursed since winning Super Bowl III with Joe Namath


After a long offseason full of justified Super Bowl hopes, the Jets are back to square one, losing star quarterback Aaron Rodgers on Monday to a season-ending Achilles injury, just four snaps into his highly anticipated New York debut.

Unfortunately for Jets fans, this kind of tragedy is all too familiar. While no one could’ve predicted Rodgers’ first — and only? — Jets season ending before it could even get started, Gang Green has been something of an NFL magnet for disaster.

In honor of Rodgers’ hardly worn No. 8 jersey, here are eight reasons why you might consider the Jets cursed since 1968, when Joe Namath famously guaranteed an underdog victory in Super Bowl III and delivered the franchise its only Lombardi Trophy to date:

8. The Jets collapsed in the 1982 AFC title game

New York went 6-3 in a strike-shortened season, blowing out the Bengals and edging the Raiders for their first shot at a Super Bowl in more than a decade. But up against the rival Dolphins on a muddy Orange Bowl field, they failed to score a single point, falling 14-0 as QB Richard Todd threw five interceptions. The loss was so draining that coach Walt Michaels resigned just weeks later.

7. Then they did it again in 1998

It took another 16 years for the Jets to reach the AFC Championship after their 1982 stinker, but the results weren’t much better this time around. On paper, they were stacked, with QB Vinny Testaverde in the midst of a career year under Bill Parcells, and New York fresh off a franchise-record 12-4 finish. Matched up with the Broncos, however, they fumbled their shot at a Super Bowl trip; Testaverde was picked twice, future Hall of Fame running back Curtis Martin managed just 13 yards and Gang Green blew a 10-0 lead, allowing 23 unanswered points and propelling Denver to its own title run.

6. The Jets missed on at least three straight early-round QBs


Missing on a top QB draft pick can set a franchise back years, but missing on consecutive early-round darts can keep a team in a perpetual rebuild. That’s precisely what happened in New York starting in the early 2000s. Chad Pennington (No. 18 overall, 2002) lasted eight years in town as a fan favorite, but he missed 59 games due to injury during that time, saving arguably his best stuff for a Comeback Player of the Year bid with the rival Dolphins in 2008. Mark Sanchez (No. 5, 2009) appeared in two AFC title games but totaled 89 turnovers in four healthy seasons, never completing 60 percent of his passes. Geno Smith (No. 39, 2013) never had more touchdowns than picks as a starter. Sam Darnold (No. 3, 2018) went 13-25 before being traded. And now Zach Wilson (No. 2, 2021) is looking to revive his career taking over for the nearly 40-year-old Rodgers who replaced him.

5. Vinny Testaverde also went down in Week 1

Rodgers isn’t the only Jets star to see an entire season go down the drain. Testaverde was coming off arguably a career year going into the 1999 campaign, having just thrown 29 TDs while leading New York to a 12-1 record and AFC title-game appearance. But the former No. 1 overall pick, who opened his career with the Buccaneers, Browns and Ravens, suffered a ruptured Achilles in the Jets’ season opener against the Patriots, erasing Super Bowl hopes and forcing the club to use multiple QBs the rest of the year.

4. Brett Favre ‘retired’ his way out after one controversial year

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A three-time MVP with the Packers over 16 seasons, Favre teased retirement before orchestrating a trade to the Jets ahead of the 2008 season, Rodgers’ first as Green Bay’s full-time starter. But the hype never paid off, as the future Hall of Famer battled shoulder issues and threw as many picks (22) as TDs in a 9-7 season. He then “retired” again, only to receive his release from the team and join the Vikings months later. His only future link to the Jets came via reports of an allegedly inappropriate texting relationship with a team media personality.

3. Aaron Rodgers’ Super Bowl hunt lasted four snaps

The Testaverde and Favre experiences were deflating in different ways, but at least those QBs had an opportunity to play extensive football for the Jets. Rodgers’ arrival was all but years in the making, with the longtime Packers star finally splitting from Green Bay for a chance at a Tom Brady-esque relocation and title run in 2023. And yet, behind a shoddy offensive line, he made it just four snaps before exiting with a season- and potentially career-ending injury.

2. The Jets left the historic 1983 QB class with … Ken O’Brien

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There is no QB draft class more revered than that of 1983, when three different future Hall of Famers entered as first-round picks in John Elway, Jim Kelly and Dan Marino. The Jets also drafted a QB that year at No. 24 overall: Ken O’Brien. The UC Davis product had some highs, going to two Pro Bowls, but he ultimately went 50-61-1 with the Jets, including playoffs. Worse yet, he went three spots ahead of Marino, who would go on to spend 17 years with the rival Dolphins as one of the most prolific passers ever.

1. Bill Belichick left after one day (and used a napkin to announce it)


It doesn’t get much worse than this. Belichick followed Hall of Famer Bill Parcells from the Giants to the Patriots to the Jets, all as an assistant coach. When he finally got the chance to succeed Parcells as New York’s head coach in 1999, he spent just one day on the job, reportedly so at odds with the Jets’ setup that he scribbled a resignation note on a napkin and then announced during his introductory press conference he’d be stepping down. Shortly afterward, Belichick joined the rival Patriots as their head coach, beginning an ongoing 20+ year run that’s included six Super Bowl titles and has long since cemented him as an all-time great.

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