Through the first wave of free agency, Joe Douglas and the Jets have taken time to improve the team’s offensive line — their No. 1 offseason priority — while also bringing back a number of their own players who had hit the open market.
With moving pieces now falling into place, here’s a look at how the Jets’ depth chart may be looking right now (or at least our best guess), though there’s still work to be done …
QUARTERBACK: Sam Darnold, Mike White
This offseason, much has been made about the Giants’ backup quarterback situation, but the Jets could also use a veteran signal-caller behind Darnold. Trevor Siemian and David Fales, both of whom saw playing time with Darnold dealing with mono last season, are both free agents, and the Jets must add to the QB depth chart.
White is a former fifth-round pick by the Dallas Cowboys, but he doesn’t have the experience many teams look for at the backup spot.
RUNNING BACK: Le’Veon Bell, Josh Adams, Kenneth Dixon, Trenton Cannon, Jalin Moore
Despite the almost constant trade chatter, Bell looks to be the Jets bell cow once again in the backfield. Even in a down season last year, Bell still had nearly 800 rushing yards. As Adam Gase and the coaching staff continue to find the best ways to get Bell the ball, the depth behind him is currently not what it was. Both Ty Montgomery and Bilal Powel are on the open market, as Montgomery was not every effective in his first season in New York.
Josh Adams is an interesting piece, as he was the Eagles’ leading rusher in 2018. He’s had time on the Jets’ practice squad, and he could be a prime candidate to see a big uptick in playing time next season.
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There is obviously one huge piece to the Jets’ reciever puzzle, and that’s Robby Anderson. The wide receiver market has moved at a glacial pace this offseason, with most teams looking ahead to the draft to fill their voids at wide receiver. With that being the case, Anderson could very well end up back with the Jets, but if not, they have a lot of work to do.
Crowder will be back, but he’s more suited to the slot than on the outside. Enunwa’s playing career is in question after another neck injury, and after that, there’s not much on the depth chart. Doctson is a former first-rounder, but he hasn’t lived up to his billing in the NFL.
TIGHT END: Ryan Griffin, Chris Herndon, Trevon Wesco, Ross Travis
Griffin, the UConn product, had a productive first season with the Jets, catching 34 passes with five receiving touchdowns. The question is, can the Jets count on him as a No. 1 tight end? And what about Herndon? Suspensions and injuries limited him to just one game in 2019, but he is a former fourth-round pick who put up 502 receiving yards in his rookie season. Wesco, meanwhile, is more of a blocker and special teams option at this point, as he had just two catches in 16 games last season.
LT: George Fant, Chuma Edoga, Corbin Kaufusi
Fant is a huge gamble for the Jets, but it was likely a necessary one. Yes, he’s mainly been a backup in Seattle, but the Jets were in desperate need for a tackle in free agency, and Fant has the frame to be a solid tackle. He could be a bit of a project, but it’s a high-risk, high-reward move for New York. Plus, there’s always that 11th pick in the draft, which the Jets are very likely to use on another tackle.
LG: Alex Lewis, Connor McGovern, Jonotthan Harrison, Josh Andrews
Trading for Lewis was the first big move that Douglas made last season after taking over as the team’s general manager, and Lewis, while not spectacular, was the team’s most consistent player on the O-line. The Jets recently rewarded him with a new three-year contract, hoping he can pick up where he left off. Behind him, the Jets have both McGovern and Harrison, both with starting experience.
C: Connor McGovern, Jonotthan Harrison, Jimmy Murray, Brad Lundblade, Leo Koloamatangi
McGovern was considered the best center available on the free agent market, and the Jets made sure to grab him early into the league’s new year. The former Bronco should solidify the center spot, where Ryan Kalil struggled after coming out of retirement to sign with Gang Green. McGovern should be a huge upgrade, anchoring the line in front of Darnold. And again, Harrison provides some decent depth as a backup.