It took until December, but the New York Jets’ injury-depleted offensive line finally got some depth.
It was the year the Jets lost all six offensive tackles to injury. These players are Mickey Picton, Alija Vera Tucker, Duane Brown, George Fant, Max Mitchell and most recently, Cedric Ogboyi, all on injured reserve. Picton and Vera Tucker suffered season-ending injuries.
Fortunately for the Jets, Brown struggled with a shoulder injury all year and deserves the utmost respect for his commitment to this football team. Not to mention, Brown has provided the Jets with some impressive fielding contributions at left tackle.
Also, over the past two weeks, the Jets have recovered Mitchell and Fant. Fant missed more than two months and Mitchell nearly two months.
Ironically, and this speaks to the constant injuries that have held this group back, when Mitchell returned in Week 12, he was originally backing up Ogbuehi before he got hurt early on. Mitchell remained the starter for Week 13, but Fant was shortly after placed in the lineup.
New York Jets offensive line:
Finally, the Jets have a fifth of their prime and, after that, depth of quality. And for the first time, they have three health interventions at the same time, providing some relaxing depth.
While right tackle is not officially fixed, the assumed starting line right now, from left to right, are Brown, Lackin Tomlinson, Conor McGovern, Nate Herbig, and Fant. A very talented and exciting bunch in all areas, more than capable of getting the job done because of the jets attack. From there, Mitchell is the third tackle swung off the bench, giving the Jets a backup he feels confident in.
The tackle finishes with 10-year veteran Mike Rimmers as fourth on the depth chart. One has to assume that when he returns Ogbuehi will be fourth on the depth at tackle chart.
Next, the inside of the offensive line has a quality first backup in veteran guard/center, Dan Feeney. Also, the 2021 Jet Laurent Duvernay-Tardif was recently added. He is currently on the practice squad but could be promoted to the team’s active list, providing more depth to this offensive line.
So, overall, while it took until Week 13 to finally get three tackles healthy, the Jets have the depth needed to feel comfortable as 2022 stretches on. Across the plate, starting unit and depth, despite season-ending injuries to Vera-Tucker and Becton, Still a brave group. Joe Douglas deserves a lot of credit for continuing to support this group of centers. Ultimately, the Jets have the offensive line to make it to the last five games of the 2022 regular season, and they’re looking to make the playoffs.