The 23rd pick of the 1983 draft by the Los Angeles Raiders, Jessie Hester was a marvelous ‘straight ahead’ speedster out of Florida State. His rookie season was pretty solid. Hester would make 665 yards on 32 catches. As a deep threat the Raiders system really appealed to the young player as Jessie averaged a whopping 20.8 yards per reception. In 1984, Hester would then make 23 catches for 632 yards,- an incredible 27.5 yards a reception, but because Hester only made 23 receptions- he didn’t qualify as a league leader. (If he did, his 27.5 average would have made him second all time in the NFL books.) Jessie would play one final season in LA in 1987 and that’s when it’d hit rock bottom for him as he’d only make one catch that season for 30 yards. He would be cut by the Raiders after the season and suffer through another rocky year making 12 catches for the Atlanta Falcons.
It was in 1990 that Hester would finally find his home with the Indianapolis Colts. He’d have his finest hour as a pro that season making a career high 924 receiving yards and 6 touchdowns. I remember NBC even talking during half-time about how the lowly Colts had at least one bright spot in Hester. Jessie would play the next 4 seasons there for the Colts, and held the record for most consecutive games with a reception for the team (until it was broken by Marvin Harrison). He’d garner somewhere over 3300 yards playing with the Colts during his time with them and then sign to play with the Los Angeles Rams, in their final season before heading out to St. Louis for a final season with them before retiring. Since football Jessie has served as a head coach most notably in Florida where he guided his school to the State Championship game twice. I attempted to get his autograph through his school in early 2010, but did not hear back from him.
G/Gs 147/104 Rec 373 Yds 5850 Avg 15.7 Td 29 lg 81t