Plaxico: Destined To Wear Green
Plaxico Burress is winning over fans, coaches and teammates in his first year as a Jet. If the organization had their way in 2000, he might be on the verge of induction into the Jet Ring of Honor.
Kansas City Chiefs coach Todd Haley, the former Jet receivers coach, revealed on Wednesday that New York targeted Placxico as a potential draft pick in their franchise changing, four first-round pick extravaganza of elven years ago.
“We had lost Keyshawn, we had traded him to Tampa, and we were looking for a guy that could fill those shoes,” Haley told the media on a conference call. “(Burress) obviously had the size and ability and has kind of proven on his own, made a name for himself on his own, obviously. But when you do a lot of work on guys like that … Everything happens for a reason, but I know as a receivers coach sitting there in the draft room, I was disappointed when the Steelers took him.”
Unfortunately, those Jets never got the chance. Despite possessing the 12th, 13th, 18th and 27th picks, Plaxico was taken before their first selection hit the board. The Pittsburgh Steelers selected Burress with the 8th overall pick out of Michigan State.
Plaxico gave Pittsburgh six productive years before moving on to sign a free agent contract with the New York Giants prior to the 2005 season. He and Eli Manning combined to become the most productive quarterback-wide receiver combination in Giants history, leading the team to a Super Bowl championship over the New England Patriots. Burress, playing hurt, was the most dominant player on the field in the NFC Championship game that season, and caught the game winning touchdown in the Super Bowl to cap off an improbable upset. His Giant career ended in shame when a gun accident cost Burress his job, the ’08 Giants a chance to repeat and the former star wideout two years behind bars.
Finally, Plaxico’s career led him back to where it almost began. His acquisition, questioned by most because of his time away from the game, has been a major plus for this Jet team. His size, strength, and ability to reel in red zone touchdowns are just as prevalent as they were when Todd Haley and that former Jets staff wanted to draft him over a decade ago.