The 12th annual NFL Honors was historic for the Jets, electing two players into the Pro Football Hall of Fame and winning both the AP Offensive and Defensive Rookie of the Year Awards.
Newest Hall of Fame member, CB Darrelle Revis, perfectly summarized it.
"Tonight, the New York Jets organization, we actually stole the show," said Revis, who is one of nine players to be elected to the 2023 class. "We had Sauce Gardner win Defensive Rookie of the Year and Garrett Wilson win Offensive Rookie of the Year as well. We have myself and then we have Joe Klecko, two of the best defensive players ever to play in the organization. That's four guys from the organization and we have the past and present.
"It's a big night and we're just excited. The sky's the limit for the future guys."
The Jets became the third team in NFL history to win both rookie of the year awards (1967 Lions, 2017 Saints).
Gardner became the fifth Jet to win the award, the most any team has had. The No. 4 overall pick out of Cincinnati led the NFL with 20 passes defensed to go with 75 tackles and 2 interceptions. His 45.6% reception percentage and 316 yards allowed also paced the league.
"I feel like it's a huge reason why I am where I am," Gardner said about imagining himself winning the award. "I feel like it's a huge reason why I'm so confident, is because of my imagination. I always pictured myself doing these amazing things, and these things are not easily achievable. And, you know, it always ends up happening."
On the other side of the ball, Wilson became the first player in franchise history to win OROY and the first to receive a vote for the award since 1996. The No. 10 overall pick finished his rookie season with 83 receptions, 1,103 yards for 4 touchdowns. Not only did Wilson become the first 1,000-yard rookie receiver in franchise history, but he also led all rookies in receptions and receiving yards.
"It's such an honor," Wilson said. "Those were great candidates, and you know, even if I didn't win, I felt blessed just to be nominated and to be there in the presence of all that greatness. It's just something I'll never forget, something that no one can take from me, or take from us and, just really a special night for me."
Revis, a first-ballot Hall of Famer, and Klecko will be officially enshrined in Canton, OH, in August. They will be the seventh and eighth primary Jets players to make the Hall of Fame.
Klecko, the face of the New York Sack Exchange, was voted into the Pro Bowl at three separate positions (defensive end, defensive tackle and nose tackle). He was the NFL Defensive Player of the Year in 1981 and played for the Jets from 1977-87.
"Almost 30,000 people involved in the Hall of Fame, to be elected and be one of 371 now, I think is beyond our imaginations," Klecko said.
Revis played in five Pro Bowls and had three first-team All-Pro selections with the Jets from 2007-12 and again from 2015-16.
"It feels amazing," Revis said Thursday night. "You just have so many thoughts running through your mind of the journey, you've been through and the ups and downs, the failures, the successes of it all. And nobody never tell you about the failures, they only tell you the success stories. For me, this has been a ride, but I stuck to the way I wanted to approach the game. So you know, it's just amazing to get honored for the hard work."