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Jets O-Line Look Ahead: Slow but Sure Signs of Stability, Growth

A Return to Full Strength by Mekhi Becton Would Help Unit Continue Its Rise in the Zach Wilson Era

Table inside Article
Jets Player GP-GS-DNP-IA OSnaps-STSnaps
Alijah Vera-Tucker (G) 16-16-0-0 1026-39
Morgan Moses (T) 17-16-0-0 1020-51
Connor McGovern (C) 15-15-0-0 972-1
George Fant (T) 15-15-0-1 887-21
Greg Van Roten (G) 17-10-0-0 698-55
Laurent Duvernay-Tardif (G) 8-7-0-1 390-25
Dan Feeney (G/C) 16-5-1-0 184-56
Conor McDermott (OL) 6-3-3-0 134-13
Chuma Edoga (T) 4-0-8-0 99-3
Mekhi Becton (T) 1-1-0-0 48-0
Isaiah Williams (OL) 4-0-4-5 7-10
Ross Pierschbacher (OL) 0-0-1-0 0-0
Greg Senat (OL) 0-0-0-1 0-0

Finished on Injured Reserve: Becton, McGovern, Fant, Cameron Clark, Parker Ferguson
Finished on Practice Squad: Williams
Reserve/Future Signings: Pierschbacher, Williams, Dru Samia (OL), Grant Hermanns (OL)

Potential Free Agents in 2022
Moses, Duvernay-Tardif, Feeney, McDermott

'22: 'We'll Be In a Good Spot'
LT George Fant said he felt like he "got everything together" after moving from RT to LT for the injured Mekhi Becton in Week 2. And for this next year he sees a similar meshing for the entire team. "You've got all these young guys on the roster and those guys are only going to get better," Fant said. "We've got some good veterans in the room, in the building who understand what it takes to win games. When we bring those young guys along, we're going to be in a good spot."

Job one is to get the still young Becton back to his dominant first-round-draft-choice form of '20. While that's going on, the Jets will need to decide about re-signing RT Morgan Moses and RG Laurent Duvernay-Tardif. Returning are LG Alijah Vera-Tucker, C Connor McGovern and RG Greg Van Roten. However the tackles and guards shake out, the ultimate goal is stability and improvement, which will help optimize QB Zach Wilson's passing game production and will keep opening creases for the Michael Carter-led ground assault as the offense aims to take a big step forward.

See the best images of Jets O-Line during the 2021 season.

'21: Shaky Start but Trending Upward
Becton went out with his knee injury in the second half of the Carolina game and never returned to game action. Moving Fant from right to left and inserting Moses at RT steadied the OL, which didn't have another starter change until Game 10, when Duvernay-Tardif replaced Van Roten at RG. Instability returned for the final three games, with Game 1 starters Becton, McGovern and Fant ending the year on IR, with G/C Dan Feeney and T/TE Conor McDermott saw increased reps. Cameron Clark announced his retirement as a player due to a spinal-cord injury.

For the O-line as a unit, while the pass-blocking was up-and-down (10 games allowing two or fewer sacks, six games yielding four-plus sacks) and the offense's NFL rankings faded at the end of the year, improvement was still evident. The Jets' net passing yardage/game ranking rose to as high as ninth in the NFL, the overall yards/game number improved from as low as 31st to as high as 21st, and the team's yards/carry average soared from 30th to as high as ninth. Good omens for '22.

OL Trivia
The Jets' O-line in 2021 had the same number of different starters that it had in '20 — nine each season. But unlike '20, this past season the Jets had a steady starting lineup with only one change (LDT for GVR at RG) for a block of 12 games. That was the longest stretch for a Jets starting O-line with just one change since 2014, when D'Brickashaw Ferguson/Brian Winters and Oday Aboushi/Nick Mangold/Willie Colon/Breno Giacomini started 15 consecutive games together.

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