George Fant's absence could be catastrophic for the NY Jets offense

NY Jets, George Fant
NY Jets, George Fant / Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

The NY Jets released their final injury report ahead of their Week 15 matchup with the Miami Dolphins, and one key offensive starter seems likely to miss the game.

After failing to practice all week, starting left tackle George Fant has been listed as doubtful on the team's injury report leaving his status for Sunday's game very much in question.

Fant has battled a knee injury all week and seems likely to be the only injured inactive for the Jets against the Dolphins. Right guard Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, backup guard Dan Feeney, and defensive tackle Sheldon Rankins are all questionable but expected to play.

As for Fant, the Jets will likely be forced to turn to veteran backup Conor McDermott who is in line to start at left tackle.

Conor McDermott is a massive step down from George Fant for the NY Jets

Fant has exceeded all expectations starting in place of the injured Mekhi Becton and put together a career year. The veteran tackle has allowed just 18 pressures on 555 pass-block snaps and has arguably been the Jets' best offensive lineman.

His 73.0 Pro Football Focus pass-block grade ranks 28th among all offensive tackles and he's one of just three qualified left tackles to have allowed only one sack and fewer than 20 pressures on the season along with Trent Williams and Donovan Smith.

Without Fant, the Jets will be forced to turn to the fifth tackle on their depth chart with Becton and Chuma Edoga both also sidelined. There's no avoiding the obvious here — McDermott is a massive liability.

The 29-year-old allowed a pressure on nearly 15 percent of his pass-block snaps at left tackle last season and ranked third on the team in QB hits allowed despite playing only 161 pass-block snaps.

To make matters worse, the Jets will be facing a Miami Dolphins team that blitzes 40 percent of the time and has wreaked havoc on opposing offensive lines in recent weeks.

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Already without their top two wide receivers, the Jets will now likely be down to their third (or fourth)-string left tackle. Things could get ugly for the Jets offense on Sunday.