I think C Kevin Mawae summed it all up when tears came down his eyes when the Jets were on their way to defeating the Green Bay Packers and having the title of the 2002 AFC East Champions as well as a spot in the NFL Playoffs. It was a surreal moment, I for sure thought the Jets would make the Playoffs, but for them to win the division was just icing on our Gang Green Cake. It was definitely a rollercoaster of a Season, I mean my goodness, with all the ups and downs, it just makes it that much more special. To have the Jets defeat the Brett Favre-led Packers was sweet, to have them completely blow out Peyton Manning and the high-octane Indianapolis Colts Offense in the AFC WildCard Playoffs game was wonderful, but to have them lose to the Oakland Raiders in the AFC Divisional Playoffs game was the best. Let me explain.
I don't know about you, but when I work hard at something and I fail, I get a deep fire lit inside of me, so that the next time I'm faced with it, I will go through it like a fireball through an iceberg. Can you imagine how fired up our NY Jets will be come next Season? Do you have any idea how hard Chad Pennington will work to be even more perfect? Can you possibly measure the intensity this team will be playing at come next Season? You can't, because this is it people. No more games, this team is going to take names next Season and cause more damage than ever before! Major credit and respect is definitely due to the entire NY Jets organization, especially the Coaching Staff for never giving up or losing hope. I especially admire Coach Edwards for keeping his poise during all those intense times, say what you want about him, but this guy has and always will have my respect. He deserves it.
Plus how about our boys on the field? It was a team effort; we got where we did because of the entire teams' blood, sweat, and tears. I know every Season I like to pick who I feel was the MVP, just like the Jets do, as well as many others. I've been thinking who I felt it should be in my eyes and here's who it is to me: QB Vinny Testaverde.
Think about it for a minute. If it wasn't for #16, I doubt QB Chad Pennington would be as good as he is now. Ever since Pennington was drafted, he was learning everything from Vinny. Now look at how great Pennington is! I think the most stand-up thing that occurred in the Jets lockerroom all Season was how Vinny paved the way for Chad. He could have easily divided the lockerroom when it was announced he was benched and that the starting QB spot would goto #10. He could have easily treated Chad like a nobody and just let him be thrown into the fire without any tips, advice, or anything like that. But no, not Vinny Testaverde, he helped Chad every way he could. That speaks a lot about a man, and it speaks even more for a NFL Veteran like Vinny. He may have had some bad Seasons and he may have caused us some stress, but the guy is a class act. Did you hear the response he got when Chad gave him the go-ahead to go into the game in that Packers game as well as that Colts Playoff game? People just chanted his name so loud, even I couldn't believe it. We definitely have our Quarterback of the future in Chad Pennington, but we'll always have those classic "comeback" games that Vinny Testaverde provided us with, games in which we'll never, ever forget.
Like I was saying, it definitely was a miracle Season, one in which I, as well as countless other Jets Fans enjoyed, but remember, it was a miracle Season. Next Season I strongly believe it won't be another miracle Season, it'll be THE Season.