The NY Jets are still holding out hope that former first-round pick Mekhi Becton can return healthy and motivated in 2022 as he'll look to pick up where he left off following an incredibly promising rookie campaign.
However, that much is far from a guarantee. The last 12 months have been a rollercoaster for the former Louisville star with some even suggesting that the Jets could move on from Becton.
Bleacher Report's Alex Kay recently suggested that the Jets could ship Becton to Pittsburgh in a package that would net the Jets second and fourth-round picks in next year's draft.
"While Becton may not be in peak form right now, he did have a promising 74.4 PFF grade as a rookie. HE could be an ideal buy-low candidate to improve Pittsburgh’s offensive line as it prepares for life without longtime quarterback Ben Roethlisberger."- Alex Kay
Would the NY Jets really consider trading Mekhi Becton?
The Becton story has been rehashed ad nauseam at this point. From his injury history to concerns over his work ethic, Becton has dominated offseason headlines for the Jets over the last few months.
The organization is reportedly "frustrated" with his lack of progress and some reports even suggest that the coaching staff is close to giving up on him.
All of that being said, it seems highly unlikely that the Jets would look to move on from Becton this summer. The simplest reason is that they just don't have anyone to fill his massive shoes in the starting lineup.
Becton is expected to be one of the Jets' two starting tackles, likely at right tackle opposite veteran George Fant. If Becton were to be traded, even for this suggested healthy return, who would the Jets start in his place?
Conor McDermott? Chuma Edoga? Max Mitchell? Those are your three realistic options.
Sure, the Jets could go out and sign someone like Riley Reiff, a player they've been connected to in the past, but Reiff is a below-average starter at this stage of his career. That wouldn't solve the team's lack of depth either.
While trading Becton might be more realistic than simply cutting him as one radio "analyst" foolishly suggested last month, it still wouldn't make much sense for the Jets.
Becton's trade value is at its all-time low, and the team doesn't have a suitable replacement. The Jets put all their eggs in the Becton basket when they passed on drafting an offensive tackle early in this year's draft.
General manager Joe Douglas has garnered a reputation for knowing when to cut bait, but it doesn't seem plausible to cut bait here.
Expect Mekhi Becton to be on the Jets' Week 1 roster.