The 1992 New York Jets are a franchise that was in the midst of a playoff run, but lost three starters to injury. All three played significant roles in the Jets’ postseason run. In week 10, the Denver Broncos lost Eric Lageman, the defensive tackle, and Al Toon, the star wide receiver. Toon also suffered his ninth concussion within eight seasons and announced his immediate retirement.
Byrd was seriously injured in a game against the Kansas City Chiefs in Week 13. He attempted to sack quarterback Dave Krieg, but he got to him first and forced a fumble. Byrd then collided with his teammate Scott Mersereau and broke his neck’s C5 vertebrae. Byrd was eventually paralysed. The Jets never again issued Byrd’s number and the number did not officially retire until 2012.
The 1992 New York Jets season was the team’s 23rd season, and its 33rd overall. The team had started the season with a 8-8 record from the previous year. They ended up with a 4-12 record. However, they did manage to reach the playoffs for the first time in team history. The 1992 New York Jets won 3 games and finished 4th. This made the team one of the best teams in NFL history.
The famous game against the Chiefs was another notable event that impacted the 1992 season of the Jets. After a single touchdown, Byrd was punished for colliding with Scott Mersereau of the Chiefs, which resulted an indefinite suspension. The team lost that game and it is believed that Byrd’s intentional hit on Chiefs quarterback Dave Krieg caused his death.
The 1992 New York Jets were a run-and-shoot team under the guidance of Mike DiSpirito. The Jets finished fourth in AFC East Division with a record of 4-11-1. The farm director at that time was Mitch Lukevics. Two draft picks were made in 1992’s NFL Draft. Both were considered “elite” among most analysts. However, neither team was favored to win Super Bowl.
Despite their success in the 1990s, 1992 Jets failed to qualify for the playoffs. They finished with a 6-27-1 record and failed to reach the AFC Championship Game for the second consecutive season. The Jets failed to make the playoffs and also lost their last two games to injuries to star quarterback Ken O’Brien. The Jets finished fourth in the AFC East, with an 18% win percentage.