After an 11-year stint with the New York Jets, center Nick Mangold was released by the team in an expected move to clear up some cap space. The Jets are clearly now entering a rebuilding phase, but it will be hard to find a replacement as good and as well-loved by fans than Mangold. To place wagers on how the Jets finish this year, visit SkyBook Online Sportsbook.
Mangold is one of the top centers in franchise history and was New York’s longest-tenured player. A first-round pick in 2006, Mangold only missed 12 out of 176 games over his career and garnered seven Pro Bowl and two All-Pro selections. His two All-Pro seasons were during the 2009 and 2010 when the Jets made back-to-back AFC Championship games.
Mangold’s consistency, football acumen, toughness and impeccable technique were key in anchoring an offensive line that was one of the best in the league during those few years. As different linemen came and went, Mangold remained a fixture of the unit, starting no fewer than 14 games each season until this past season where he started just eight games due to a severe ankle injury.
Perhaps even more admirable than Mangold’s consistent play was his personality, which was a hit with members of an otherwise ruthless New York City media. He was respectful and insightful when it came to appearing on New York’s various radio and television shows and very compassionate when it came to the numerous charities he represented and will still represent.
The Jets have only had two full-time centers in team history–Hall of Fame finalist Kevin Mawae and Mangold–and Mangold will certainly be in the discussion when he appears on the ballot for the first time. In a sport where offensive linemen are constantly doing the dirty work without getting the recognition of players who score touchdowns, it was nice to see a center rise above that mold and become a favorite among Jets fans.
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