The six years that Darrelle Revis spent in New York will forever be remembered as one of the best eras in Jets history. Revis is the 1st Jet that has ever warranted a comparison to Mr. Jet himself, Broadway Joe Namath. Furthermore it is possible that Revis might have surpassed Namath as the best player in Jets history. Despite his inability to lead the Jets to a Super Bowl victory, Revis did something that no Jet great, not even Broadway Joe has ever been able to accomplish. He was able to lead the Jets to back-to-back AFC Championship games. However this is not what the Revis era will be remembered by. The lasting memory will be that of a player whose likes the Jets may never see again.
Revis is the kind of player that only comes along once in a lifetime. Throughout his time with the Jets he was unquestionably the best cornerback in football and arguably the best defender overall. While Rex Ryan has been known to make some rather outlandish comments, you can never question the praise he heaped on Revis. It would be difficult to find anyone who fully disagrees with Ryan’s belief that Revis is the best cornerback the NFL has seen since Dion Sanders.
Week in and Week out Revis walked out on the gridiron and completely erased the other teams best Receiver. When I say the other teams best receiver I am not talking about players who had been undeservingly thrust into being a bad teams #1 option. I am talking about the whose who of NFL wide outs; We are talking about the Reggie Wayne’s, the Andre Johnsons, the Terrell Owens, the Calvin Johnsons and the Randy Moss’s of the world, all of whom are destined to be enshrined in Canton some day.
What else can be said about Revis that isn’t already summed up by the Revis Island moniker that he is so widely known by? Rex Ryan was able to trot Revis out on the field, and leave him on an Island without any type of safety help what so ever. He did this because he knew he could trust Revis not to get burned. After all it is pretty hard to beat a corner when Quarterback’s refuse to throw anywhere near him. I’ll even take it one step further.
Calling Revis a cornerback simply doesn’t do justice to the kind of dominant player he is. I believe that we need to name a new position for the role Revis filled for the Jets defense. We need to start referring to Revis and any future players of his ilk as Defensive Receivers. Anyone who watched Revis play for the Jets or even watched his SportsCenter highlights knows what I am talking about. Anytime a QB decided to throw at Revis, they weren’t throwing a pass to their teammate, but they were instead throwing a jump ball between Revis and their receiver. The problem with this approach was that more often then not Revis either intercepted the pass or knocked it down for an incompletion. A player capable of this sort of impact on a game is the kind of player a team can never hope to replace.
I chose to focus on the positive aspects of the Revis Era because now is not the time for fans to look back at the bad. Now is time to appreciate the good times Jet Fans had watching Revis play. It is not the time to think about the holdouts, the injuries, or his tenuous relationship with Jets brass. The time for reflecting on those things came and gone when Revis signed the dotted line on his new Bucs contract.
Now is the time for Jet fans to appreciate what they had in Revis. They must appreciate the privilege they had to watch a player who will be remembered as an All-Time great play during his prime. A player who whenever he stepped out on the field gave every ounce of incredible talent in his body to do whatever it took to help his team win. We need to remember him as one of the most feared defensive players in recent memory. We must remember him the way we all knew him. We must remember him as The Revis Island.