Jets C Jonotthan Harrison talks Sam Darnold, competing for his spot
The New York Jets could be retooling their offensive line in 2019, but center Jonotthan Harrison is no stranger to working hard to carve out his role.
Even after five seasons in the NFL, Jonotthan Harrison is still having to prove himself as a starting-caliber offensive lineman.
But to hear him tell it, there’s nothing he knows better than competing to prove he belongs.
Heading into his sixth season in the pros, Harrison is ready for another chance to show what he’s capable of (via team senior reporter Eric Allen):
I’m here to work at the end of the day. Every year of my career so far, I’ve had to compete to get on the field. Whatever decision they decide to do, that’s up to them. I’m here to work, I’m here to compete and looking forward to the potential opportunity to be a part of this offensive line.
The Jets added some new faces this offseason, trading for veteran guard Kelechi Osemele from the Oakland Raiders, and spending a third-round pick in the 2019 NFL draft on USC tackle Chuma Edoga.
An undrafted free agent from Florida who entered the league in 2014, Harrison started 23 games over three seasons with the Indianapolis Colts. He joined the Jets in 2017, starting just one game that year before making eight more starts last season.
He heads into the 2019 season as the presumed starter at center. Throughout his action in 2018, he developed a close connection with rookie quarterback Sam Darnold, a relationship he hopes will continue to grow this year:
Sam’s my guy. Off the field, we’re good friends, we might hang out and go grab a bite or something and we’ll text each other. Sam’s just a great guy and I love the way he plays. I always put it as he still has a little backyard football in him. He understands everything going on, but if he needs to make something happen, he’s great at making something happen.
The Jets will have plenty of fresh faces on offense this year, including star running back Le’Veon Bell and slot receiver Jamison Crowder. There’s likely to be some moving and shaking in the lineup surrounding Harrison up front, as well, but his performance in 2018 should give him a solid edge to remain the team’s starter in the middle.