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The 1998 New York Jets season was the 39th season for the team and the 29th in the National Football League. The team improved on its previous season by three games, finishing 12–4 in their second season under head coach Bill Parcells, winning their first division title since the AFL-NFL merger in 1970; the 12–4 record was also the best in Jets history. This success came just two years after the Jets’ 1–15 record in 1996.

1998 New York Jets season
Head coachBill Parcells
OwnerLeon Hess
Home fieldGiants Stadium
Division place1st AFC East
Playoff finishWon Divisional Playoffs (Jaguars) 34–24
Lost AFC Championship (Broncos) 23–10
Pro BowlersQB Vinny Testaverde
RB Curtis Martin
WR Keyshawn Johnson
LB Mo Lewis
P Tom Tupa
Jets uniforms12.png

The Jets earned a first-round bye, given to the two division winners with the best records, for the first time. They defeated the Jacksonville Jaguars in the Divisional round of the playoffs. Their attempt to reach their first Super Bowl in thirty years was halted by losing in Denver when the 14–2 Broncos scored 23 unanswered points in the second half.

The 1998 Jets are one of only two teams in NFL history[note 1] to win seven games against teams that would go on to make the playoffs.[1]

Vinny Testaverde threw for 3,256 yards, 29 touchdowns, and only 7 interceptions in 421 pass attempts (1.7%).

The title game was the Jets’ last title game appearance until 2009, although they returned to the playoffs in 2001, and qualified for the postseason four more times that decade.


In the offseason, the Jets signed New England Patriots running back Curtis Martin to an offer sheet. The Patriots had offered Martin, their star running back, a tender deal that would net them a first-round pick and a third-round pick if a team signed him. Jets coach and general manager Bill Parcells, who had left New England two years prior and still harbored some bad blood with the team, offered Martin a very large contract that the Patriots were unwilling to match, further fueling the rivalry between the teams.

In addition, the Jets parted ways with veteran quarterback Neil O'Donnell after two seasons and signed another veteran, Vinny Testaverde, to serve as backup to Glenn Foley. Testaverde eventually succeeded Foley as the starter and led the Jets to their division title. On defense, New York added former Miami Dolphins linebacker Bryan Cox.

The offseason also saw the first major overhaul of the Jets' uniforms and logos since 1978. The team changed its primary color from kelly green to hunter green, eliminated black which had been added in 1990 as a trim color, and abandoned the solid green helmets with the modern “JETS” wordmark in favor of white helmets with two green parallel stripes down the center, as worn from 1965-77, but with a green facemask. The new primary/helmet logo resembles the 1965-77 version but is oval rather than football-shaped and has a somewhat “cleaner” appearance, with starker lines defining the word “JETS” in thick sans-serif italics in front of the “NY” in serif outline lettering, and the miniature football at bottom center. This logo was also added to the jersey front, by the player’s left shoulder. The jerseys and pants also resemble the 1963-77 uniforms, with alternating shoulder stripes, opposite-colored sleeves and TV numerals, and two green parallel stripes from hip to knee on each side.

NFL DraftEdit

Round Pick Player Position School/Club Team
2 56 Dorian Boose Defensive End Washington State
3 67 Scott Frost Defensive Back Nebraska
3 87 Kevin Williams Free Safety Oklahoma State
4 111 Jason Fabini Offensive Tackle Cincinnati
5 134 Casey Dailey Linebacker Northwestern
5 141 Doug Karczewski Guard Virginia
5 146 Blake Spence Tight End Oregon
5 149 Eric Bateman Guard BYU
6 163 Eric Ogbogu Defensive End Maryland
6 174 Chris Brazzell Wide Receiver Angelo State
6 183 Dustin Johnson Running Back BYU
7 195 Lawrence Hart Tight End Southern


New York Jets 1998 final roster

Running Backs

Wide Receivers

Tight Ends

Offensive Linemen

Defensive Linemen


Defensive Backs

Special Teams

Reserve Lists

Practice Squad

Rookies in italics

Regular seasonEdit


Week Date Opponent Result TV Time(ET) TV Announcers Game site Notes Attendance
1 September 6, 1998 at San Francisco 49ers L 36–30 (OT) CBS 4:15pm Greg Gumbel & Phil Simms 3Com Park Game decided in overtime on Garrison Hearst's 96-yard touchdown run
2 September 13, 1998 Baltimore Ravens L 24–10 CBS 1:00pm Verne Lundquist & Randy Cross Giants Stadium Glenn Foley threw three interceptions
3 September 20, 1998 Indianapolis Colts W 44–6 CBS 1:00pm Ian Eagle & Mark May Giants Stadium Vinny Testaverde replaced Foley and threw four touchdowns
4 Bye
5 October 4, 1998 Miami Dolphins W 20–9 CBS 1:00pm Greg Gumbel & Phil Simms Giants Stadium Jets intercepted Dan Marino twice
6 October 11, 1998 at St. Louis Rams L 30–10 CBS 4:15pm Kevin Harlan & Sam Wyche Trans World Dome Foley started but benched for Testaverde
7 October 19, 1998 at New England Patriots W 24–14 ABC 8:20 pm Al Michaels, Dan Dierdorf & Boomer Esiason Foxboro Stadium Former Patriot Curtis Martin rushed for 107 yards
8 October 25, 1998 Atlanta Falcons W 28–3 FOX 1:00pm Dick Stockton & Matt Millen Giants Stadium Falcons played backup quarterbacks Tony Graziani and Steve DeBerg; Jets intercepted passes from both
9 November 1, 1998 at Kansas City Chiefs W 20–17 CBS 4:05pm Verne Lundquist & Randy Cross Arrowhead Stadium Jets erased 17–10 gap in fourth quarter
10 November 8, 1998 Buffalo Bills W 34–12 CBS 4:15pm Greg Gumbel & Phil Simms Giants Stadium Bills quarterback Doug Flutie intercepted twice
11 November 15, 1998 at Indianapolis Colts L 24–23 CBS 1:00pm Ian Eagle & Mark May RCA Dome Last loss of the regular season
12 November 22, 1998 at Tennessee Oilers W 24–3 CBS 4:15pm Ian Eagle & Mark May Vanderbilt Stadium Steve McNair limited to 163 yards total offense
13 November 29, 1998 Carolina Panthers W 48–21 FOX 1:00pm Ray Bentley & Ron Pitts Giants Stadium Keyshawn Johnson ran in a 35-yard score
14 December 6, 1998 Seattle Seahawks W 32–31 CBS 1:00pm Kevin Harlan & Sam Wyche Giants Stadium Phil Luckett criticized for a late Testaverde rushing touchdown where replays showed him down short of the goal. Announcers on CBS were Kevin Harlan and Sam Wyche.
15 December 13, 1998 at Miami Dolphins W 21–16 ESPN 8:15pm Mike Patrick, Joe Theismann & Paul Maguire Pro Player Stadium Dan Marino sacked five times
16 December 19, 1998 at Buffalo Bills W 17–10 CBS 12:35pm Greg Gumbel & Phil Simms Rich Stadium Jets complete first season sweep of Bills since 1994
17 December 27, 1998 New England Patriots W 31–10 CBS 1:00pm Greg Gumbel & Phil Simms Giants Stadium Jets win AFC East for first time


AFC East
(2) New York Jets 12 4 0 .750 416 266 W6
(4) Miami Dolphins 10 6 0 .625 321 265 L1
(5) Buffalo Bills 10 6 0 .625 400 333 W1
(6) New England Patriots 9 7 0 .563 337 329 L1
Indianapolis Colts 3 13 0 .188 310 444 L2


Playoff Game SummariesEdit

AFC Divisional Playoffs vs. Jacksonville JaguarsEdit

AFC Divisional Game: Jacksonville Jaguars at New York Jets – Game summary
1 2 34Total
Jaguars 0 7 71024
Jets 7 10 14334

at The Meadowlands, East Rutherford, New Jersey

  • Date: January 10, 1999
  • Game time: 12:40 p.m. PDT
  • Game weather: 28 °F (−2.2 °C) relative humidity 53%, wind 17 miles per hour (27 km/h; 15 kn), wind chill 16 °F (−8.9 °C)
Game information

AFC Championship Game vs. Denver BroncosEdit

AFC Championship Game: New York Jets at Denver Broncos – Game summary
1 2 34Total
Jets 0 3 7010
Broncos 0 0 20323

at Mile High Stadium, Denver, Colorado

  • Date: January 17, 1999
  • Game time: 2:05 p.m. MDT
  • Game weather: 37 °F (2.8 °C), relative humidity 36%, wind 20 miles per hour (32 km/h; 17 kn)
  • TV announcers (CBS): Greg Gumbel and Phil Simms
Game information


  1. ^ The 1997 Packers are the other


External linksEdit