The moral of the story when it comes to the New York Jets 2022 offensive line has remained the same for several months, and is unstable. As a result of the large number of casualties from the beginning of the training camp until last week, the top five in the aircraft attack was always unknown.
It all started with Mekhi Becton early in camp this summer. Then, right before the start of the regular season, Duane Brown sustained an injury. After week 3, George Vant had to go to IR for at least four weeks. The following week, Max Mitchell was in four games as well. Finally, after making two position changes, Elijah Vera Tucker had an injury at the end of the season.
In total, all of the top five offensive tackles squandered some time in only the first seven games of the season. Next week, it will be the fourth group of offensive linemen in just eight matches.
Continuity was far from a thing for the Jets, with the five not staying the same for four games in a row.
Review of the current state of New York Jets OL:
The two players who were constantly available from week to week were quarterback Conor McGovern and left goalkeeper Lacon Tomlinson. Both players have played 100% of the Jets’ shots this year.
From there, the other three stands were a revolving door. Each of the intervention modes will now feature three different novice players on Sunday. Brown did a great job on the left tackle and he deserves all the credit for his fight with a shoulder injury for this team. With the right intervention, without Fant, Mitchell and Vera-Tucker, this week will be a former first-round pick, Cedric Ogbuehi.
Finally, in the right guard, two different controllable players had to play. Vera-Tucker moved to center in the offseason. After he needed to move back into both positions within two weeks, Nate Herbig had to step in with the right intervention. It worked well.
This week, from left to right, the group will look like this. Brown, Tomlinson, McGovern, Herbig, and Agboehee. The only two backups at the moment are Mike Remmers’ handling and in-house G/C, Dan Feeney.
As noted in the introduction, both Vant and Mitchell can soon return from the injured reserve. Starting with Mitchell, he will be eligible to return next week. If not, then bye the following week, he should return after the week off. Then, with Fant, he was able to get out that week, but Robert Saleh indicated earlier in the week that seems unlikely. The concern has become with some recent reports, will Fant be able to make a comeback this year?
He was placed in reserve after the third week with a knee injury. It is worth noting that Vant underwent knee surgery in January earlier this year. She kept it limited throughout the offseason program. At this time, aircraft can certainly use the Fant, and the hope should be that it continues to make progress.
If that’s not the case for Fant, even when Mitchell returns, offensive tackle depth could be a key question as the Jets progress through this season.
Saleh just announced at his press conference that Fant is week to week and that he hopes to come back after the farewell.
Will Joe Douglas hit another trade?
As a result of all the offensive line casualties, the final commotion surrounding the aircraft on the trade front, as the deadline approached, revolved around the position of offensive intervention.
Two big names, Laremy Tunsil and Jack Conklin, have been floated around. However, both seem unlikely in the end. Taylor Mouton is another right that has grown up. But it’s possible that planes won’t be able to get it since both its contract and the value of the trade are very expensive.
One player mentioned that Andre Dillard of the Philadelphia Eagles might make more sense. The connection makes sense because Joe Douglas was still in Philadelphia before joining the Jets when the Eagles drafted Dillard in the first round.
In his four years with the Eagles, Dillard started just nine games. The reason he was mentioned in trade talks is due to his current backup role and the fact that he will be a free agent next year.
Knowing that his contract has likely expired makes less assets that Jets will have to give up to get Dillard.
Dillard recently turned 27. If Fant returns, adding Dillard isn’t vital for the Jets. On the other hand, if Fant’s comeback were to drag on, it would be ideal for Douglas to add depth behind Mitchell with someone like Dillard.
The last player worth watching is Riley Reeve. On the 3-4 Chicago Bears and hire a free agency a year later, it probably will. Jets brought Reiff to visit themselves early in the summer.
What goes a long way for the Jets here is a healthy imagination. If so, a quintet of Brown, Tomlinson, McGovern, Herbig and Vant with Mitchell as the swing tackle gives the Jets a more quality group capable of getting the job done, despite several injuries. Mitchell should step in and start Fant, and making a move to tackle a third would be wise.
Joe Douglas has done a great job of bringing this crucial group of sites closer together. Now, we’ll see what happens on the trade front, as well as with Vant and Mitchell, over the next week or two.