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A True Inspiration: The J.J. Birden Story

Former Chiefs Wide Receiver J.J. Birden Recently Joined The Show. Let’s Take A Look At His Career!

By: Justin Miles (@justm1les)

Recently, JP and I had the opportunity to sit down with former NFL wide receiver J.J. Birden. It was an awesome experience to talk about J.J’s career and reminisce about certain moments. Check the show out here! Let’s use this opportunity as a chance to look over Birden’s incredible career.

Coming out of high school, Birden was told he was too small to play college football. Even so, J.J.’s speed earned him a scholarship to run track at the University of Oregon. While at Oregon, he also walked on to the football team and earned a spot on the roster.

Despite fighting injuries throughout his college career, J.J. had both a successful career on the track and on the field. J.J. was one of the best track runners in the nation and led Oregon to a National Championship. On the field, he caught 45 passes for 739 yards and a touchdown. Birden’s college performance earned him an invite to the NFL combine.


While at the combine, Birden’s speed and agility impressed coaches across the league. One coach in particular thought very highly of J.J. Cleveland Browns head coach Marty Schottenheimer thought highly of Birden and drafted him in the 8th round of the 1998 NFL draft.

Unfortunately, Marty soon left to coach for Kansas City, leaving J.J. in Cleveland. For the next couple of years, J.J. would bounce around from a couple of teams, fighting a lingering knee injury. Despite a slow start to his career, Birden was later brought into Kansas City, being reunited with Marty Schottenheimer.

With a fresh start with the Chiefs, J.J. developed into one of the leagues best receivers. He went on to play in Kansas City for 5 years and ended his career with a couple of seasons playing for the Atlanta Falcons.

J.J. retired with 244 catches, 3,441 yards and 17 touchdowns throughout his career. During his playing years, he was one of the most dominant receivers in the league. J.J.’s quickness and elusiveness was unmatched across the league.

He went from being too small to play college football to being one of the best in the NFL. J.J. revolutionized the receiver position and forever left his mark on the game. His story is one of determination and sheer will. He is truly an inspiration.

After retiring, J.J. went on to become a businessman, partnering with companies such as Xocai and Isagenix. He also now travels the country as a motivational and opportunist speaker. He currently has a daily motivational podcast, ‘The Daily M.I.S.T.’. Check it out!

In 2010, J.J. was inducted into the University of Oregon’s Athletic Hall of Fame for his contribution to the 1985 NCAA Track and Field National Championship along with his successful football career. He is considered one of the greatest receivers in Kansas City Chiefs history.

Once again, we would like to thank J.J. for coming on the show and congratulate him on his incredible story. J.J. and his story is truly incredible. Go check out the show and J.J.’s, ‘Daily M.I.S.T.’!


Stats via: ESPN


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