Obscure Spotlight: Jermaine Wiggins

wigginsIf you include Jermaine Wiggins’ brief stint with the UFL’s Florida Tuskers, the former tight end finished his days in pro football with 257  receptions for 2,311 yards and  17 receiving touchdowns. Wiggins was a working-man’s football player from the start, gaining an athletic scholarship to Marshall University after a year of post-graduate prep school following his years at East Boston High School.

After wearing Thundering Herd dark green for two years, Wiggins transferred to the University of Georgia, where he played in all 11 games for his junior and senior seasons. Still, no team drafted Wiggy in 1999 after he graduated. Instead he signed on with the Jets as an undrafted free agent.

Wiggins saw his first game action with New York in 2000. He played 11 games for the Jets but caught just two passes. Gang Green released Wiggins in late November, but he quickly signed with New England. He played the last four games for the Patriots, and caught 16 passes for 203 yards.

wigginstuskers

Wiggins, in great shape as a member of the Florida Tuskers in 2009. You can tell he really takes this gig seriously.

He had an unimpressive regular season in 2001, as he was used mostly in short-yardage situations, but caught four touchdowns from a young Tom Brady. In the playoffs, Wiggins was instrumental in New England’s Super Bowl run. He caught 10 passes in the Patriots’ divisional game against the Raiders, and made a key reception on the final drive of Super Bowl XXXVI. That game would be Wiggy’s last as a Patriot.

Wiggins bounced around the next two years, from Indy to Carolina, where he would play against his former teammates in the Super Bowl, as a member of the Panthers.

His best seasons, statistically, came in 2004-06 when Wiggins played for Daunte Culpepper’s Vikings. Wiggy was one of Culpepper’s favorite targets in 2004, catching 71 balls for 705 yards and four touchdowns. Once Culpepper left for a fat Miami paycheck, however, Wiggins’ productivity waned and at age 31, he walked off the NFL field for the last time.

Wiggy now works in radio, and does frequent work for Boston’s CBS radio affiliate, 98.5 The Sports Hub. He is featured on Tuesdays on the popular show Felger and Mazz. Wiggins was one of the coolest dudes in football, and is now one of the very best in radio. You can follow Wiggy at @jwiggs85

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