Jets News

3 second-year NY Jets players primed for a big season in 2022

NY Jets, Zach Wilson
NY Jets, Zach Wilson / Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports
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NY Jets, Alijah Vera-Tucker
NY Jets, Alijah Vera-Tucker / Bryan Bennett/GettyImages

3. Alijah Vera-Tucker, RG, NY Jets

The Jets traded up in the 2021 NFL Draft to secure a player who they believed to be the obvious top guard in his class. One year later, Alijah Vera-Tucker has done his best to prove the team right.

While Vera-Tucker wasn't exactly an All-Pro as a rookie, he more than held his own starting 16 games at left guard. He solidified himself as a key building block in a young, but talented offense.

Vera-Tucker finished his rookie season with a Pro Football Focus grade of 66.8 that ranked 39th out of all guards in football. In particular, his 72.5 run-block grade was good for 17th at his position.

The former USC standout was one of only six qualified left guards (80 percent of snaps played) to allow two or fewer sacks. That 72.5 run-block grade was seventh among all left guards as well, just one spot behind offseason signing Laken Tomlinson.

The addition of Tomlinson will see Vera-Tucker switching to right guard in 2022. There may be an initial adjustment period, but the Jets are confident that he can take that next step this season regardless.

At just 22-years-old (he turns 23 in June), Vera-Tucker has legitimate Pro Bowl upside. And if the Jets' starting offensive line can stay healthy, he could be primed for a fantastic sophomore campaign.

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