Aaron Rodgers close friend further ignites David Bakhtiari, NY Jets rumors

You know it's happening. It's inevitable.

David Bakhtiari
David Bakhtiari / Todd Rosenberg/GettyImages

The NY Jets have been connected to David Bakhtiari rumors for months now, and now that the former All-Pro left tackle has officially been released, the rumblings are only growing louder.

Bakhtiari's close personal relationship with Aaron Rodgers makes a reunion in Florham Park almost feel inevitable for the two longtime Green Bay Packers staples. Bakhtiari isn't the only Rodgers buddy fueling the rumor fire on social media, however.

Former Packers quarterback Kurt Benkert, notably a close friend of both Rodgers and Bakhtiari, decided to play reporter on Monday, insisting that the Jets already have interest in the recently released offensive lineman.

Benkert tweeted on Monday that Bakhtiari is "rumored to be a target for the Jets," citing his source, which most believe to just be Bakhtiari himself. After all, the two remain very close from their Green Bay days.

Benkert later provided an update on Bakhtiari's injured knee, insisting that the 11-year veteran recently "received good news about the status of his knee."

An Aaron Rodgers, David Bakhtiari reunion on the NY Jets seems inevitable

It wasn't too long ago that Bakhtiari was one of the best left tackles in football. The Colorado product made five consecutive All-Pro teams between 2016 and 2020 before injuries derailed his career.

Bakhtiari has appeared in just one game in two of the last three seasons due to separate knee injuries and hasn't played more than 12 games in a season since 2019. That's a major issue for a team like the Jets that has struggled with offensive line help in recent years.

Nonetheless, the Jets are still looking for at least one new starting tackle, and with Mekhi Becton and Duane Brown unlikely to return, they need a new blindside protector. You know that Rodgers will heavily push for the Jets to sign his longtime friend.

Benkert, who spent time with the Packers in 2021 and 2022, posting what he did is just further evidence that the two sides are already talking. In reality, this has likely been a discussion in Florham Park for months now.

The Jets are still expected to further address their offensive line in both free agency and the 2024 NF Draft. Bakhtiari could make some sense as a (hopefully) cheap contingency plan at left tackle going into April.

It probably wouldn't be wise for the Jets to rely on Bakhtiari as a full-time starter heading into the 2024 season, but if what Benkert is saying about his knee is true, perhaps the Jets do it anyway.

Either way, Bakhtiari feels like as safe a bet to sign with the Jets as any current free agent. This one feels inevitable.