The Jet Press

6 changes the NY Jets need to make to their roster ASAP

NY Jets, Garrett Wilson
NY Jets, Garrett Wilson / Mitchell Leff/GettyImages
facebooktwitterreddit
3 of 7

2. The NY Jets need to get veteran depth at offensive tackle

Hopefully, Duane Brown is not out for the entire season. Based on recent history with the Jets and their premature prognosis on players, you can't rule it out.

It's not like Robert Saleh's recent comments are helping build optimism after he told the media that he is "hopeful" that Brown can return this season.

Regardless of whether Brown returns or not, in Week 5, 6, or beyond, Joe Douglas needs to bring in veteran insurance at offensive tackle, not just because Max Mitchell struggled mightily in Week 1, but because you have to prepare for the worst scenario.

What if George Fant gets injured in the next few weeks? Then what? There are veteran options available through trade or free agency. Whether that be making a deal with the Chicago Bears for Tevin Jenkins or signing a veteran like Daryl Williams, the Jets must address their depth at tackle.

Joe Douglas apologists will justifiably excuse him for the Jets' current issues at offensive tackle — and in some respects, rightfully so. After all, who could have envisioned that both Mekhi Becton and his replacement Duane Brown would go down to injury?

But a general manager's job is to cover all bases and roll with the punches when things go south. The job requirement of fortifying a roster doesn't stop just because of unforeseen adversity. There's no such thing as unanticipated regarding being a general manager.

Some people will give Max Mitchell a break for his performance on Sunday. The 'what did you expect, he's only a rookie' crowd will come to his defense.

Defenders will state that Mitchell's performance in Week 1 could've been worse. Some will argue that since the Jets have four quality offensive-line starting options, you can live with one weak starter.

The problem with that mindset is that you can't camouflage a weakness in the NFL. Teams will exploit it. No matter how hard you try to give a player help. What ends up happening in that scenario is that other players are now tasked with helping someone else do their job.

When you are weak in one spot, it weakens an entire unit. Fewer passing options are available to you on pass downs, and your play designs become about avoiding disaster rather than making positive plays. 

Maybe Mitchell will grow into his role as time progresses. But for now, the Cleveland Browns are rightfully salivating at playing the Jets' offensive line.

Mitchell is not in the Jets' starting lineup because he blew away the competition and vaulted himself to prominence as Jason Fabini did years ago. He is playing because there are no other options, and the people in charge of getting those options need to get to work.

Even if you believe in Mitchell as a starter, the Jets need viable options behind him and Fant if they were to get hurt. Otherwise, Nate Herbig could be starting at guard with Alijah Vera-Tucker returning to his college position. Either that or Grant Hermmans enters center stage.

I wish you good luck with that. 

facebooktwitterreddit