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Congratulations are in Order for the NY Jets, Now Proud Owners of the Longest Playoff Drought in the Four Major Sports

New York Daily News. Getty Images.

Any great comedy benefits from having that one hapless, doomed, downtrodden loser side character for whom nothing ever goes right. Think Jerry Gergich from Parks & Recreation or Jerry Smith from Rick & Morty. (Wait. Is there a pattern here?) And in the great American tragicomedy that is pro sports, there is no better example of this principle than the New York fricking Jets. As I've been saying my whole adult life, if the Jets didn't exist, I'd have had to invent them. 

Those words are as true now as they've ever been, as they're pinning the hopes and dreams of their entire franchise on trading a ton of assets for a 39 year old quarterback with a questionable desire to play football in the long term, but a passion for darkness retreats and ayahuasca. 

So it's only fitting that our great national rodeo clown of a franchise gets to hold the current record for failure:

Source - The Sacramento Kings clinched an NBA playoff berth for the first time in 16 years on Wednesday night, and that gave the Jets a dubious distinction.

The Jets now have the longest playoff drought among any NFL, NBA, MLB or NHL team.

The last time the Jets made the playoffs was in 2010. … Since that season, the Jets have missed the playoffs 12 times in 12 years, and they’ve finished last in the AFC East in six of the last seven seasons. …

Jets owner Woody Johnson said this week that he’s not patient and the Jets have to win now.

Wear futility's thorny crown with pride, Jets fans. A lot of effort went into all those lost seasons. 

Still, it's hard to believe it's been so long. That 2010 trip to the playoffs was the year the Jets went into Foxboro to face a 14-2 Patriots team that had beaten them 45-3 a month earlier. Coming off a bye, no less. And the team of Rex Ryan, Mark Sanchez, Darelle Revis and Bart Scott 

Giphy Images.

… handed New England the worst non-Super Bowl defeat of the Dynasty Era. With a brilliant game plan by Shrex that kept the Pats off balance all night long. And the Jets claimed it was personal, because this was the week Wes Welker got benched for the first series after his legendary Foot Fetish Pun press conference. What a time to be alive that was. 

And how incredible it's been all these years, and that's as good as it got for them. At Gettysburg, there's a moment marking the furthest advance the Rebels got, at the spot where General Longstreet's assault was driven back. The statue is called "The High Water Mark." From there, it was all downhill for the Confederacy, all the way to their surrender at Appomattox. That Divisional playoff win in January of 2011 is the Jets high water mark. There should be a monument to it. 

To put this all in perspective, if you were born the day of their last playoff game, congratulations on turning 12. My younger boy was born in 2001. By his 12th birthday, he'd seen eight championships in Boston, by all four teams. A dozen years without as much as making the playoffs is the kind of thing I used to read about in Red Sox history books. About the age of Ted Williams, when the only postseason was the World Series. Not even accidentally backing into a Wild Card spot in this era, when the NFL is built to promote parity it an accomplishment unto itself. You have to truly screw yourself with a lot of awful drafts, bad hires, and terrible management. 


But Woody Johnson isn't patient, for the 12th time in 12 consecutive years, so I'm sure it will all work out this time. Were it any other franchise, this might be sad. As it is, this is pure comedy. Thanks, J-E-T-S. Buy a shirt: