No gathering of the Green & White during any Super Bowl Week would be complete without our Super Bowl III trophy. And the trophy wouldn't be complete without one of its stars holding court right alongside it, someone such as CB Randy Beverly.
And there were Beverly and Trophy side by side in the heated tent outside Jets House across from Madison Square Garden today.
"No, that will never get old, never, ever," Beverly said. "It's like it just happened yesterday. Every time I see it, it brings back good memories."
And a few of those memories are about what Beverly did in that game. I never get tired of reminding that was one of the stalwarts on our stalwart defense on Jan. 12, 1969 in the Orange Bowl. That day he became the first of only 12 players to come up with two interceptions in a Super Bowl.
"That never gets old either," Beverly said. "It's a part of history. My grands and great-grands can see that now, hear about it and read about it."
SBIII is of course about Joe Namath and his guarantee and always will be. But our defense was underrated the entire 1968 season and on into the Super Bowl crucible, and Beverly speaks to that now, again, reminding of the dangers of taking an opponent for granted.
"Joe said what we couldn't say," Beverly recalled. "We saw the films of the Colts and we just realized we were better than they were, but we couldn't say that. But Joe could. We all felt it, and when he said it, we cheered."
OK, we know what some fans will say now. Hey, that was 45 years ago (yes, it's the 45th anniversary of our only pro championship). We don't have a companion for Petey (Rozelle) yet and we're heading toward five decades.
But it is what it is, folks. All we can do now is use the 3-1 last quarter of our 8- 8 season as a springboard into the offseason, work harder than ever, and get after it again. Never give up, baby, never give up.
"You can't talk your way there. You have to play your way there," Beverly said. "All the players have to be on the same page. It can't be just one player."
But, he concluded, there's no reason it can't be the Green & White sooner than later.
"It would be so exciting," he said, "to have another Super Bowl with the Jets playing in it."
Jets House Jottings
For Sunday's SBXLVIII, Beverly picks not the team with the better secondary but the team with the vastly more experienced quarterback used to picking apart secondaries.
"I see a guy like Peyton Manning, who everyone had written off as being done, through, career over, coming back, and I'm pulling for him," he said. "All of a sudden he's back leading the league in all the different passing categories. That's a great accomplishment for him, so I'd like to see the old players do well."
Thursday's two sessions at Jets House were heavy on current players, old-timers and Jets fans bogeying to the DJs' beat especially at the night session. CB Antonio Cromartie and FB Tommy Bohanon were there during the day, and check out Eric Allen's video interview with Cro on newyorkjets.com for some Cromartie news on his season-long hip issues.
Reporter Charlie Frankel, doing double duty this week, for us and for the NFL, talked with K Nick Folk early in the night session and we'll have his story up Friday morning. Frankel also checked in with Bohanon, a schoolmate of his from Wake Forest, and we'll work that piece into our rotation as well.
Other current Jets who showed up at night were RBs Chris Ivory and Bilal Powell, WR Jeremy Kerley, and CB Kyle Wilson. And there was a yearbookful of alumni — besides Beverly, both Freeman McNeil and Wesley Walker worked the Presidio VIP Club level while LB Victor Hobson renewed acquaintances with lots of fans on the main floor. And as I was leaving to write tonight, I ran into Super Bowl contributor John Dockery and favorite Namath Seventies target Richard Caster, who were coming in for a late look around.
I'll have word from Freeman on one of his favorite and most important events also during the day Friday.