5:55pm: The Turner-Hackett partnership will continue to a third city. After today’s meeting, Tom Pelissero of NFL.com reports (on Twitter) the Jets are signing the veteran tackle. Turner agreed to a one-year deal worth up to $3.15MM. These are roughly the same terms as Turner’s 2022 Broncos deal. With Turner believed to be healthy after a knee injury last season, he will supply the Jets with a scheme-familiar option at tackle.
4:16pm: Billy Turner followed Nathaniel Hackett from Green Bay to Denver in 2022. With the Broncos moving in a different direction at right tackle, the veteran may have an opportunity land with Hackett’s next team.
The Jets are meeting with Turner on Monday, Field Yates of ESPN.com tweets. Turner has played the past four seasons under Hackett and is obviously familiar with the system the new Jets OC will use. While the Jets were connected to first-round tackles ahead of the draft, other teams pouncing on the class’ top blockers led to the AFC East team making other plans at the position.
The Cardinals (Paris Johnson), Bears (Darnell Wright) and Titans (Peter Skoronski) made O-line choices between the Nos. 6 and 11 overall picks, and the Patriots dealt No. 14 overall to the Steelers, who brought in Broderick Jones. The Jets had held the No. 13 overall pick until last week but moved back two spots in the Aaron Rodgers trade. As a result, the team just missed out on Round 1 tackle real estate. Rather than take Oklahoma’s Anton Harrison, whom the Jaguars ended up choosing later in Round 1, the Jets drafted Iowa State edge rusher Will McDonald.
Although the Jets did address their tackle spot later — via a fourth-round pickup of Carter Warren — they exited the draft with similar questions. The team has 2020 first-rounder Mekhi Becton under contract, but the once-promising blocker has only played one game over the past two years. Duane Brown is coming off surgery and going into his age-38 season, while 2022 fourth-round pick Max Mitchell saw a blood-clot issue shut him down late last season. Mitchell is back in the fold, but the Jets have uncertainty at both tackle spots. Veteran Cedric Ogbuehi, one of the Jets’ emergency options during an injury-riddled season at this position last season, also re-signed last month.
While the Packers cut bait on Turner’s four-year deal in 2022, Hackett brought him back to Denver on a one-year contract. The multi-stint Broncos starter battled injury trouble last season, being one of a few Denver O-linemen to go down, but was viewed as the team’s optimal right tackle starter. Favored to win the job out of training camp, Turner instead needed more recovery time and did not make his first-string debut until Week 7. Another knee injury sidelined Turner in November and limited him to eight games (seven starts) last season. Pro Football Focus rated Turner as a top-50 option at tackle in each of his three Packers slates but did not view his injury-limited Broncos season as well, slotting the North Dakota State alum 70th at the position last season.
The Broncos, who have battled rampant right tackle issues over the past decade, signed Mike McGlinchey to a big-ticket deal. Turner is not in the team’s plans but said last month he is 100%. Turner, 31, played both tackle spots and worked at guard during his three-year Green Bay run. The former Dolphins third-round pick has made 61 starts over the past four seasons. Given his ties to Hackett, Turner reuniting with he and Rodgers would make sense for the Jets. Three-year Jets starter George Fant remains a free agent.