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J. J. Stokes
Date of birth: October 6, 1972 (1972-10-06) (age 37)
Place of birth: San Diego, California
Career information
Position(s): Wide receiver
Jersey №: 83, 85
College: UCLA
NFL Draft: 1995 / Round: 1 / Pick 10
Organizations
 As player:
1995-2002
2003
2003
San Francisco 49ers
Jacksonville Jaguars
New England Patriots
Playing stats at DatabaseFootball.com

Jeral Jamal Stokes is a retired National Football League wide receiver. Stokes last played in the NFL in December 2003 for the New England Patriots.

Contents

High school

Stokes began his football career at Point Loma High School in San Diego, CA, where he was part of a gifted team that included fellow wide-receiver Brett Callan, quarterback Dan White (later a UA star), and future-NFL lineman La'Roi Glover. The team was coached throughout Stokes' four years by local legend Bennie Edens. In 1990, during Stokes' senior year, the Pointers captured the CIF championship.

College career

While at UCLA, Stokes earned Pac-10 first-team honors as a sophomore. His breakout season came in his junior year when he was named the Conference's Offensive Player of the Year. Stokes' junior season was rewarded with a top ten finish in the balloting for that year's Heisman Trophy, being the only junior recognized. Stokes' junior season ended with first-team All-American recognition by The Sporting News, AP, UPI, and Kodak. Stokes' senior year began as the nation's leading Heisman contender but was quickly sidetracked by a severe upper thigh contusion suffered in the season's first game. Stokes still holds UCLA school records for receiving touchdowns in a season (17 in 1993), receiving touchdowns in a career (28), receiving yards in a game (263 vs. USC in 1992) and receptions in a game (14 vs. Wisconsin, 1994 Rose Bowl), among others.

On October 9, 2009, Stokes was inducted into the UCLA Athletics Hall of Fame.

NFL career

Stokes was selected with the tenth overall pick of the 1995 NFL Draft by the San Francisco 49ers, who traded up to the No. 10 spot in the first round to select Stokes as the successor to the team's Hall of Fame receiver Jerry Rice. After a slow start to his rookie season, the former Bruin, ultimately netting 38 receptions for 517 yards and four touchdowns, the last of which was tossed by Rice. During the 1996 season, Stokes suffered a broken hand and missed most of the season, leading to the emergence of the 49ers' third round pick in the 1996 NFL Draft, wide receiver Terrell Owens. In 1997, with Rice sidelined with a torn ACL, Stokes and Owens formed a formidable tandem for quarterback Steve Young, with Stokes hauling in 58 passes for 733 yards and four touchdowns. Once Rice returned, Stokes' production did not falter as he would achieve career highs in receptions (63), yards (770) and touchdowns (eight). Stokes was also the recipient of linebacker Bill Romanowski spitting in his face during a Monday Night Football game in December 1997[1]. Along with the rest of the team, Stokes' production dropped in 1999 as a result of Young's retirement. The 49ers released him in 2003 and he was initially signed by the Jacksonville Jaguars before going to New England. Stokes was rarely used in the Patriots offense, only contributing 15 catches for 154 yards during the 2003 campaign. New England released him and activated fullback Larry Centers near the end of the season.[2]

Outside the NFL

Stokes (as of 2007) lives in California and is an NFL free agent. In the summer of 2006, J.J. Stokes announced he still feels he can play in the NFL and would like to play again. He currently works as a radio host for the ESPN radio affiliate based out of Modesto, California.

References

  1. ^ Monday Night Football Incident
  2. ^ J.J. Stokes Released
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