The Jets are in the market for upgrades at any number of positions on offense. One area where the team is looking to maintain its existing foundation, though, is along the offensive line. A major part of that unit, left tackle George Fant, has played his way into a new contract with the Jets, something which could take shape soon.
According to Pro Football Network’s Tony Pauline, both the team and player will meet this week at the NFL Combine “with the hopes of getting a deal done”. Pauline had previously reported that the Jets were interested in signing Fant to a new contract. The desire for a fresh pact comes primarily from his surprisingly high-quality play in 2021, along with uncertainty surrounding former first round pick Mekhi Becton. The latter, who has faced questions over his weight and conditioning in his two years in the NFL, suffered a dislocated knee cap in Week 1 which ended his season.
Originally planned to man the right tackle spot, that injury forced Fant to move to the blindside for the 2021 campaign. He fared much better than his first year in New York, allowing 18 pressures in 15 games, which ranked him third in the league. As a result, head coach Robert Saleh publicly stated that the 2022 starting LT role will be an open competition between Becton and Fant.
Pauline adds that the Jets could use the three-year, $37.5MM extension the Commanders gave Charles Leno as a similar comparison to a new Fant deal. Given how close that is to the three-year, $30MM contract the 29-year-old originally signed with the Jets, however, Pauline expects Fant to ask for a more lucrative pact. If terms can’t be agreed on, he will have one more season to prove his worth.
Besides Fant and Becton, the Jets could have Morgan Moses as another option at tackle, if he were to be brought back. If needed, they could also turn to 2020 first rounder Alijah Vera-Tucker, who has experience at both guard and tackle dating back to his time in college.