NY Jets rookie Joe Tippmann predicted to win starting center job

Joe Tippmann might be on track to start Week 1
NY Jets, Joe Tippmann
NY Jets, Joe Tippmann / Jonathan Jones-USA TODAY Sports

The NY Jets drafted Wisconsin center Joe Tippmann in the second round of this year's draft with the expectation that he would serve as their starting center of the future. Well, the future might be arriving quicker than expected.

Tippmann is expected to compete for the starting center job with veterans Connor McGovern and Wes Schweitzer this summer, and the early indication is that he could be the favorite.

The Athletic's Zack Rosenblatt recently predicted that Tippmann would win the starting center job out of training camp this summer, insisting that the Jets want Tippmann to be their Week 1 starter.

Rosenblatt did suggest that McGovern "will get every opportunity to stave off the rookie," but it does seem like it might be Tippmann's job to lose. If he's ready for a starting role, the Jets aren't going to hold him back.

The NY Jets have high expectations for Joe Tippmann

The Jets have been searching for a long-term solution at the center position since the retirement of Nick Mangold following the 2016 season. McGovern has done a fine job holding down the fort over the last three years, but the Jets clearly believed they could upgrade.

Tippmann is supposed to be said upgrade. A two-year starter at Wisconsin, Tippmann helped anchor one of the best offensive lines in the Big Ten, earning multiple Honorable Mention All-Big Ten honors.

There's a reason the Jets made Tippmann the highest-drafted center in this year's class. They believe he has the tools and athleticism to be a long-term starter in this league.

He may be the early favorite, but he's not going to be handed the job, however. McGovern has graded out as a top-10 center by Pro Football Focus in each of the last two seasons — he's rebounded nicely following a lackluster first year with the Jets.

Still, the Jets signed McGovern to a dirt-cheap one-year, $1.9 million contract this season. That contract shows exactly how the Jets view him. It indicates that they are very comfortable making him Tippmann's backup whenever they feel the rookie is ready.

If the Jets believe Tippmann is ready to start Week 1, they're not going to let McGovern or anyone else stand in his way. It's only a matter of time until Tippmann takes over as the Jets' starting center.