Jets Offensive Line Look Ahead: Mekhi Becton & Co. Aim to Build on Foundation 

Group Survived Injuries to Hit Its Stride Late in the 2020 Season

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Table inside Article
Player GP-GS-DNP-IA Off/ST Snaps
C Connor McGovern 16-16-0-0 969-5
T George Fant 14-14-0-2 829-27
G Greg Van Roten 13-13-0-0 752-36
T Mekhi Becton 14-13-0-2 691-0
G Alex Lewis 9-9-0-2 544-30
G Pat Elflein 6-6-0-0 367-19
OL Josh Andrews 15-4-0-0 311-49
OL Conor McDermott 15-1-1-0 247-47
T Chuma Edoga 11-4-4-1 235-18
T Cameron Clark 0-0-3-7 0-0
OL Jimmy Murray 0-0-7-4 0-0

Voluntary Opt-Out: C Leo Koloamatangi

Finished on Injured Reserve: Andrews

Finished on Reserve/NFI: Lewis

Finished on Practice Squad: OL Corbin Kaufusi

No Longer with Team: Kaufusi

Potential Unrestricted FAs in 2021: Andrews, Elflein

'21: A New Deal
The Jets offensive line appears to have found a foundational piece in LT Mekhi Becton, who started 13 games as a rookie in the 2020 season. He emerged as one of the NFL's most dominant run blockers and also showed promise in pass protection while working through rookie bumps. On the other side of the line, RT George Fant showed promise in his first year as a full-time starter and first with the Jets. C Connor McGovern was the iron man of the bunch, taking the most snaps on offense (969) and was the only OL to play all 16 games. RG Greg Van Roten flashed at times and was a good presence in the locker room, keeping a steady approach throughout a challenging season.

The Jets could have a lot of returning faces on the offensive line in 2021. Of the 9 linemen to take snaps on offense in the 2020 season, only Pat Elflein (7 starts, 367 snaps) and Josh Andrews (4 starts, 311) are set to become free agents.

McGovern repeatedly said throughout the season that good offensive lines typically play with each other multiple seasons. Even though the group will need to learn a new system in the offseason, there is personnel familiarity, which is an important piece of the puzzle. Each position group across the NFL has new faces each season, but the foundation among the OL was set and the group will build on it in 2021.

'20: Quick Look Back
The unit closed out the 2020 season hitting its stride. In the Jets' first win, which came in Week 15 against the Rams in Los Angeles, the O-line held LA's defense to 2 sacks. The Rams finished the 2020 season No. 2 in the NFL with 91 sacks (3.3 per game) but DL Aaron Donald, whose 13.5 sacks was No. 2 in the league, was not able to get to QB Sam Darnold. The following week, the Jets' OL held Myles Garrett & Co. to 2 sacks as well as the Green & White won their second game. Garrett, who ranked No. 6 in the NFL with 12 sacks, had 1 sack.

The Jets controlled the ball on the ground against Cleveland, amassing 131 rushing yards between six players. The Green & White also controlled the time of possession 31:48 to 28:12. In Week 13 against the Raiders, the team ran for 206 yards, their highest output since 2018. Ty Johnson became the first Jet since '18 to eclipse the 100-yard mark and had 22 carries, 104 yards and 1 TD (4.7 avg).

McGovern, who battled injuries in the beginning of the season despite not missing any games, settled into a groove Weeks 8-17. According to Pro Football Focus, he graded out No. 8 among NFL centers down the stretch compared to No. 40 Weeks 1-7.

The room did undergo trials and tribulations executing an offense with five new opening-day starters compared to the 2019 season opener without the benefit of OTAs, minicamp or a preseason.

OL Trivia
Connor McGovern in 2020 was the first Jets center to start 16 games in a season since Nick Mangold in 2013. And McGovern's 969 offensive snaps were the most by a Jets C since Mangold's 979 offensive snaps in 2014.

See the Top Photos of Connor McGovern, Mekhi Becton and the Jets O-Line in 2020

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