Jake Plummer: Wikis


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Jake Plummer

Jake Plummer at Luke Air Force Base in 1998.
No. 16     Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Personal information
Date of birth: December 19, 1974 (1974-12-19) (age 35)
Place of birth: Boise, Idaho
Height: 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m) Weight: 212 lb (96 kg)
Career information
College: Arizona State
NFL Draft: 1997 / Round: 2 / Pick: 42
Debuted in 1997 for the Arizona Cardinals
Career history
 As player:
*Inactive and/or offseason member only
Roster status: Reserve/Did Not Report
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics as of 2006
TD-INT     161-161
Passing yards     29,253
QB Rating     74.6
Stats at NFL.com

Jason Steven "Jake" Plummer (born on December 19, 1974 in Boise, Idaho) is an American football quarterback whose rights are held by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers of the National Football League. He was drafted by the Arizona Cardinals in the second round of the 1997 NFL Draft. He played college football at Arizona State.

After a 2007 offseason trade to the Buccaneers, Plummer failed to report to the team and announced his intention to retire, although he has not officially retired yet.

His nickname given to him was Jake "the Snake", named after professional wrestler Jake "the Snake" Roberts. Coincidentally, Roberts adopted that nickname as a tribute to his favorite NFL player, former Oakland Raiders quarterback Ken Stabler, who was often nicknamed "the Snake".


Early years

Plummer grew up in Boise, Idaho, went to Hillside Junior High, and graduated from Capital High School in 1993. He was a three-sport star in high school, playing baseball and basketball in addition to football. He was selected as an all-state quarterback as well as punter twice, and passed for 6,097 yards and 68 touchdowns in his junior and senior years.[1]

College career

He attended Arizona State on a football scholarship, gaining national attention as "Jake the Snake" for his elusiveness on the playing field. He was drafted in the second round of the 1997 NFL Draft by the Arizona Cardinals. In 1996 Jake lead ASU to an undefeated regular season, a Pac-10 championship, and ASU's second trip to the Rose Bowl where they lost to Ohio State 20-17.

Plummer was inducted into the Arizona State Hall of Fame in September 2007.

Professional career


Arizona Cardinals

1997 was an up and down year. He finished 3-6 as a starter, and the Cardinals went 4-12 to finish 5th in the NFC East.

In 1998, he led the Cardinals to a 9–7 regular season record and a playoff berth.

In 2000, Plummer threw for 2,946 yards, 21 interceptions, and had a 66.0 quarterback rating. He reached 10,000 career passing yards through 47 starts. In his 14 starts, he compiled a 3-11 record and the Cardinals finished 3-13, in last place in the NFC East.

2001 was Plummer's best season to that point. He was one of only two quarterbacks to take every snap for his team (Kerry Collins was the other), and he passed for 3,653 yards, 18 touchdowns, and 14 interceptions. He had a stretch of 142 consecutive pass attempts without throwing an interception. The streak was snapped on January 6, 2002, when Plummer threw an interception to rookie Redskin linebacker Antonio Pierce. Plummer led the NFL in fourth-quarter passing yards (1,227) and led the Cardinals to a 7-9 record, and a 4th place in the NFC East.

Plummer's last season with the Cardinals was 2002. His statistics were below league average (53.6 passer rating, 2,972 yards, 18 touchdowns and 20 interceptions). He eclipsed the 15,000 passing yard mark against the San Diego Chargers on September 22.

Denver Broncos

Plummer signs a football at Broncos training camp in 2006

Plummer signed as a free agent with the Denver Broncos in 2003, replacing Brian Griese. With the instruction of Broncos head coach Mike Shanahan, Plummer had his best season to date, finishing the season with a career high 91.2 rating. He had the longest run by a Broncos QB on Monday Night Football, 40 yards against the Oakland Raiders. He led the Broncos to a wild card playoff berth, where the Broncos were beaten by the Indianapolis Colts 41–10 at the RCA Dome.

2004 was a roller coaster ride for Plummer. One of his closest friends and former teammates, Pat Tillman, was killed by friendly fire in Afghanistan. Along with matching or surpassing some of former Broncos QB John Elway's passing records (including passing yardage and passing touchdowns in a single season), he also threw for 20 interceptions. He led the Broncos to a second straight wild card playoff berth, but the Broncos were again beaten by the Colts, 49–24.

In 2005, Plummer experienced his best season as a professional. Most notable was his streak of 229 passes without an interception, the longest such streak of his career. Plummer helped the Broncos compile a 13–3 record, making the Broncos the #2 team in the AFC (behind the Colts), earning the Broncos a first-round bye. The Broncos' first game was against the New England Patriots in the AFC Divisional Game at Invesco Field. Plummer's performance (15-26 for 197 yards, 1 touchdown, 1 interception) helped the Broncos to become the first team to defeat the Patriots in the past 11 postseason games. In the AFC Championship, Plummer and the Broncos were defeated 34–17 by the eventual Super Bowl champions, the Pittsburgh Steelers, with Plummer the cause of 4 Denver turnovers.

On November 27, 2006, after a lackluster performance throughout the first eleven games of the regular season, and directly following back to back losses to the San Diego Chargers and Kansas City Chiefs, Broncos head coach Mike Shanahan announced that Plummer would be replaced as starting quarterback by rookie Jay Cutler.[2] The decision to hand a 7-4 team over to a rookie quarterback was met by fans and media with mixed reactions. Those who viewed Plummer as inconsistent heralded the change as one that would revive the Broncos struggling offense[3]; others claimed such a move was ill-advised, especially given that Plummer had guided the Broncos to the AFC Championship game the year before.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Following the end of the regular season, Plummer was traded to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on March 3, 2007 for a 2008 conditional draft pick - however, a very short time later, rumors began to surface that Plummer was going to choose retirement over competition with Buccaneers quarterbacks Bruce Gradkowski, Tim Rattay, Jeff Garcia, and Luke McCown.[4] On March 9, Plummer ended the speculation surrounding him by announcing his decision to retire at a live press conference. Plummer also confirmed his retirement through the Jake Plummer Foundation's website.[5]

Though he had announced his retirement, he was still under contract to the Buccaneers; thus, Tampa Bay coach Jon Gruden met with Plummer to try to convince him to play in the 2007 season. [6] The attempt was unsuccessful. As he did not show up for 2007 training camp, the Buccaneers sued for recovery of his signing bonus. A settlement was reached on June 10, 2008 requiring Plummer to pay back $3.5 million to the Buccaneers.[7]


On March 23, 1997 Plummer became the subject of controversy when he was accused of fondling three women at a Tempe, Arizona night club called Club Rio. The women stated to police that Plummer reached under their skirts and down their pants while dancing with them and consuming alcohol. When one of the women confronted him, he allegedly kicked her in the leg. Plummer was formally charged on May 28, 1997 of felony sexual abuse. He later struck a plea bargain and received two years probation. He was also fined $1,020 and ordered to perform 100 hours of community service. [8]


He married former Broncos cheerleader Kollette Klassen on August 26th, 2007. The two met in 2005 and now reside in Sandpoint in northern Idaho, near Jake's brother, Eric.

Since his unofficial NFL retirement, Plummer is an avid player of 4-Wall Handball. Jake attended his first professional handball tournament in 2007 when he entered the Simple Green US Open of Handball (with brother Eric) in the pro doubles division; eventually losing to future hall of fame members John Bike and Danny Bell. In 2008 Jake Plummer hosted his own pro invitational and lost in the finals of the pro consulation bracket to #37 ranked, Jeff Kastner. Jake Plummer played and lost in the semifinals versus brother Eric Plummer (eventual champion) at this year's 2008 Idaho State Singles Championships.[9] [10]

Jake made a brief appearance in the 2007 Holiday Bowl, when he introduced the players of his alma mater, Arizona State.

Relationship with Pat Tillman

Plummer was teammates with safety Pat Tillman with both Arizona State and with the Cardinals and the two became close friends. After the 2001 season, while Plummer was still with the Cardinals, Tillman joined the U.S. Army Rangers in response to 9/11.

On April 22, 2004, while fighting in Afghanistan, Tillman was killed by friendly fire. On Sunday, September 19, 2004, all teams of the NFL wore a memorial decal on their helmets in honor of Tillman. The Cardinals continued to wear this decal throughout the 2004 season. Meanwhile, Plummer (who by this point was with the Broncos) requested to also wear the decal for the entire season, but the NFL turned him down because his helmet would not be uniform with the rest of the team.

For the 2005 season, Plummer would grow an untrimmed full beard and his hair long in honor of Tillman, who had such a style in the NFL before cutting his hair and shaving his beard off to fit military uniform guidelines. By the start of the 2006 season, however, Plummer had gone back to cutting his hair short, and while he maintained the beard, he started keeping it trimmed on a regular basis. As of 2008, he still maintained this look in the few public appearances he has made since retiring.

See also


  1. ^ Raffel, John. "Player Spotlight: Jake Plummer". http://www.nflhs.com/news/playersspotlight/jakeplummer_10012003_sim.asp. Retrieved 2008-12-15.  
  2. ^ Mason, Andrew (2006-11-27). "Cutler to Start". DenverBroncos.com. http://www.denverbroncos.com/page.php?id=334&storyID=6292. Retrieved 2006-11-29.  
  3. ^ Klis, Mike (2006-11-26). "Start the Cutler era". denverpost.com. http://www.denverpost.com/ci_4722797. Retrieved 2008-08-23.  
  4. ^ Bill Williamson (2007-03-02). "Plummer refuses to take trade". DenverPost.com. http://www.denverpost.com/ci_5340491. Retrieved 2007-03-02.  
  5. ^ Mike Klis (2007-03-04). "Plummer: I'm really retiring". DenverPost.com. http://www.denverpost.com/ci_5351843. Retrieved 2007-03-031.  
  6. ^ Jim Flynn (2007-07-26). "Bucs News & Notes July 26, 2007". PewterReport.com. http://www.pewterreport.com/articles/view/3143. Retrieved 2007-07-26.  
  7. ^ Plummer, Bucs reach settlement - The Denver Post
  8. ^ [1] Accessed April 16, 2009
  9. ^ Hammond, Rich (2007-10-19). "Plummer's handball odyssey". denverpost.com. http://www.denverpost.com/ci_7220039. Retrieved 2007-10-22.  
  10. ^ Clemmons, Anna Katherine (2008-11-17). "Where in the world is Jake Plummer? Playing handball". espn.com. http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/story?page=clemmons/081112&sportCat=nfl. Retrieved 2008-11-17.  

External links

Preceded by
Boomer Esiason
Kent Graham
Arizona Cardinals Starting Quarterbacks
1997 – 2002
Succeeded by
Jeff Blake
Josh McCown
Preceded by
Brian Griese
Denver Broncos Starting Quarterbacks
2003 – 2006
Succeeded by
Jay Cutler


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