George Fant

Jets Place T George Fant On IR

A lingering knee injury forced George Fant out of Sunday’s Jets-Bengals game, and the issue will sideline Fant for a while. The Jets placed the veteran tackle on IR Tuesday, Field Yates of tweets.

This moves yet another high-profile Jets tackle off the active roster. Fant’s IR shift follows the transactions that sent Mekhi Becton and Duane Brown to the injured list. While Brown will be eligible to return in Week 5, Fant is shut down until at least Week 8.

Robert Saleh classified Fant as “day to day” Monday. Instead, Fant’s IR placement further depletes the Jets at a premier position. The team finished Sunday’s Bengals tilt with Conor McDermott at left tackle. Fourth-round rookie Max Mitchell has played every snap for the Jets at right tackle this season. This is far from the initial configuration Gang Green planned, and Fant’s absence figures to make matters more difficult for Zach Wilson, who is on track to return from his August knee surgery in Week 4.

Fant had a tough day against standout Cincinnati defensive end Trey Hendrickson, who notched strip-sacks against Fant and McDermott. But Fant has been battling this knee problem all season, Brian Costello of the New York Post notes. The issue caused him to miss multiple practices last week.

Fant, 30, has been a vital O-line presence for the Jets since signing with the team as a free agent in 2020. The ex-Seahawk spent the 2020 season as the Jets’ right tackle starter and moved to the left side after Becton’s Week 1 injury last season. The Jets named Fant their starting left tackle before Becton’s training camp injury. After being on the Jets’ extension radar early this offseason, no deal came to fruition. Fant’s return from injury will begin a rather important stretch for the former college basketball player. His contract expires at season’s end.

When Fant returns, the Jets will hope to deploy the Brown-Fant tackle combo that has yet to take the field together. After winning the left tackle gig, Fant saw Brown’s late-summer signing move him back to the right side. The Jets signed veteran Mike Remmers as a stopgap option Monday. Remmers currently resides on Gang Green’s practice squad, but the journeyman right tackle is likely to be moved up to the 53-man roster soon.

Jets To Add T Mike Remmers

Two-time Super Bowl starter Mike Remmers will join a team in need at his position. The journeyman tackle is signing with the Jets on a practice squad agreement, Tom Pelissero of tweets.

Remmers is expected to be bumped up to the Jets’ 53-man roster soon. The former Chargers, Panthers, Vikings, Giants and Chiefs blocker has not played for a team this season; the Chiefs did not re-sign him after the 2021 campaign.

The Jets have both Mekhi Becton and Duane Brown on IR. They finished their Week 3 game with Conor McDermott and rookie Max Mitchell as their tackles. George Fant, who has worked as both a left- and right-side starter with the Jets, started at left tackle against the Bengals but left early due to a lingering knee injury. Trey Hendrickson finished the game with 2.5 sacks, two of those forcing Joe Flacco fumbles.

Remmers, 33, has made 90 career starts. He is probably best known for tough nights against Von Miller (Super Bowl 50) and Shaq Barrett (Super Bowl LV), but the former UDFA brings a level of experience the Jets are lacking right now. Brown is ineligible to play until at least Week 5. Remmers, who played just four games last season before a knee injury led the Chiefs to place him on IR, has worked primarily as a right tackle but did play inside during the 2018 season in Minnesota. The Jets are more solidified at guard, however; the team’s tackle plan veered off the rails once Becton suffered an avulsion fracture during training camp. Signed to a lucrative deal to replace Becton, Brown is rehabbing a shoulder injury.

The tackle uncertainty engulfing Gang Green comes as the team is readying Zach Wilson to make his season debut. Wilson, who underwent arthroscopic knee surgery in August, was slated to play behind a Fant-Becton tackle tandem. He could begin his sophomore NFL season behind Remmers and either McDermott or Mitchell. The latter has played 100% of the Jets’ right tackle snaps this season.

Jets To Sign LT Duane Brown, Shift George Fant to RT

AUGUST 14: Fant will indeed be moved to RT, head coach Robert Saleh confirmed (Twitter link via Rich Cimini of That will leave the door open for Brown to assume his familiar role on the blindside.

Saleh acknowledged that Becton is expected to miss the entire season, but Becton is traveling to Los Angeles for a consultation to confirm that prognosis (Twitter link via Cimini).

AUGUST 11: Not long after visiting the team, Duane Brown is indeed joining the Jets. New York is signing the veteran offensive tackle to a two-year deal, per ESPN’s Adam Schefter (Twitter link). He adds that the contract is worth $22MM (Twitter link).

Brown, 36, met with the Jets last week, leading to speculation that a contract could be forthcoming. The five-time Pro Bowler had been in Seattle since midway through the 2017 season. The Seahawks’ addition of Charles Cross with their first-round pick in this year’s draft left Brown on the open market deep into training camp.

Further reason for the Jets to add the Virginia Tech product came earlier this week, as it was learned that Mekhi Becton is dealing with another major knee injury which is expected to keep him sidelined for the entire 2022 campaign. With an opening needing to be filled quickly, Brown became a logical candidate to step into a starter’s role once again.

Given the fact that Becton will be under contract through at least 2023 (or one year beyond that, in the increasingly unlikely event the Jets exercise his fifth-year option), the fact that Brown is receiving a two-year deal is significant. He will, in all likelihood, slide into the left tackle spot which was set to go to George Fant for a second consecutive season, although Brian Costello of the New York Post tweets that no decision has been made yet. In any case, the former Seahawks teammates will form the bookends of New York’s o-line, which also added Laken Tomlinson on a lucrative free agent pact. How much the addition of the latter, and now Brown, affects Fant’s contact status with the Jets will be worth watching throughout the year.

As a Pro Bowl alternate last season, Brown demonstrated that he can still operate at a high level despite his age. The Jets will be counting on him to remain an effective blindside blocker for the immediate future. With Becton’s long-term health even more of a question mark, Brown could prove to be a wise stop-gap investment as the team looks to take a significant step forward on offense this year.

Jets Move Mekhi Becton To Right Tackle

Although padded practices have yet to commence in 2022, the Jets have determined their tackle configuration. Mekhi Becton will slide to the right side, leaving George Fant at the position Becton was drafted to play.

This marks a quicker-than-expected development for the Jets, though the prospect of Becton moving to the right side surfaced in late March. While Becton is still expected to start in 2022, the move is notable.

The team used Fant at right tackle opposite Becton in 2020, when the Louisville product enjoyed a quality rookie season. Questions about Becton’s weight soon surfaced, however, and the kneecap dislocation and MCL damage he suffered in Week 1 of last season sidelined him throughout his sophomore NFL slate. Becton did not participate in the Jets’ offseason program, creating a pivotal stretch during camp. The Jets made it clear early Becton’s area of concentration.

Fant, whom the Jets removed from their active/PUP list Wednesday, is going into a contract year. Fant and the Jets have discussed his deal this offseason. A solid season as a left tackle would only stand to drive up the former Seahawk’s value. Fant, 29, is set to make $9.75MM in base salary this season. He rated as Pro Football Focus’ No. 39-ranked tackle in 2021; PFF slotted Becton 31st for his left tackle work in 2020. Fant has played both left and right tackle as a pro; Becton has only worked on the left side. The Jets let 2021 right tackle Morgan Moses walk in free agency in March.

Tackle moves of this sort are not exactly unheard of. The Cardinals flip-flopped tackles in 2017, switching Jared Veldheer and D.J. Humphries‘ roles. That switch came in Humphries’ third year; he remains Arizona’s left tackle. But moves like this are still rather rare. This Jets staff, however, was not in place when Becton began his career at left tackle.

Becton was connected to being over 400 pounds at the end of last season, and the team was not happy with his conditioning before he sustained the knee injury last year. The Jets hosted Riley Reiff this offseason and were linked to first-round tackles, but the team passed on adding notable tackle insurance. This move should create more motivation for Becton, whose value has undoubtedly dipped since going 11th overall two years ago. Becton can still rehabilitate his stock on the right side, but it will represent a new challenge early in a career replete with obstacles.

Jets Activate Mekhi Becton, Carl Lawson, C.J. Uzomah From PUP List

JULY 26: Some good Jets news emerged Tuesday; Becton, Lawson and Uzomah are off the team’s active/PUP list in time for the start of veterans’ training camp workouts. While Lawson will be expected to anchor the team’s edge rush — a role his late-summer 2021 Achilles tear delayed — Becton has more to prove. The 2020 first-round pick has run into rampant health- and weight-related concerns. His coming off the PUP list so soon represents a nice development for the Jets, who are planning to slot him at either left or right tackle. Of course, Becton’s stock has dropped dramatically since his quality rookie season. That raises the stakes for his 2022 training camp.

JULY 21: The Jets placed five players on the physically unable to perform list today, including three offensive linemen. According to ESPN’s Rich Cimini (on Twitter), offensive tackle Mekhi Becton, offensive tackle George Fant, defensive end Carl Lawson, tight end C.J. Uzomah, and guard Dru Samia all landed on PUP.

Becton and Fant are set to compete for the starting left tackle role, with the “loser” settling in at right tackle. However, at least to start camp, the two starting offensive tackles will be sidelined as they recover from knee injuries. Becton was limited to only one game in 2021 before suffering his injury, and since health- and conditioning-related concerns have dogged the early part of his NFL career, an early absence won’t help his case in the LT competition. Fant, meanwhile, started 15 games for the Jets last season before suffering a knee injury that ultimately required offseason surgery. If either of the two offensive tackles are forced to miss time, the Jets could turn to the likes of Connor McDermott, Chuma Edoga, and fourth-round rookie Max Mitchell.

Lawson joined the Jets last year on a three-year, $45MM pact, but a torn Achilles during preseason forced him to miss the entire campaign. Considering the Jets could easily move on from the defensive end following the 2022 season, this could end up being a make-or-break year when it comes to Lawson’s future in New York. Uzomah joined the Jets on a three-year deal this offseason after setting career-highs across the board in 2021 with the Bengals (49 receptions, 493 yards, five touchdowns). He’s currently dealing with an undisclosed injury.

Samia spent most of the 2021 season on the Jets practice squad. He’s seen time in 15 career games, including 13 appearances for the Vikings in 2020.

AFC East Notes: Poyer, Becton, Jets, Patriots

Jordan Poyer continues to pursue a new contract, but that won’t keep him away from mandatory minicamp. The Bills All-Pro safety is in attendance for practice this week, reports ESPN’s Adam Schefter (via Twitter).

The impending free agent is seeking a new deal, and the Bills have been in communication with the player’s camp. According to ESPN’s Alaina Getzenberg, Poyer’s participation may be limited in a pseudo-holdout move.

“I think Jordan is in a good place mentally,” said defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier. “He’s still staying in touch with his teammates, and hopefully, we’ll see him soon.”

Poyer has been a consistent starter on the Bills defense since joining the organization in 2017, missing only a pair of games. After collecting 100+ tackles between 2018 and 2020, the safety earned his first career All-Pro nod in 2021 after finishing with 93 tackles, three sacks, and five interceptions. The veteran inked a two-year extension with the organization in 2020.

More out of the AFC East:

  • The Jets could turn to a committee approach as they look to replace Jamison Crowder‘s spot at slot receiver, writes ESPN’s Rich Cimini. Many assumed that Braxton Berrios would slide into the role, but head coach Robert Saleh admitted the team is “working through it” and prefers to slide players in and out of the spot to keep things unpredictable. Elijah Moore and rookie Garrett Wilson are among the receivers who could join Berrios in the slot rotation.
  • Jets defensive tackle Nathan Shepherd rejected a better offer to re-sign with the Jets on a one-year, $1.1MM deal, according to Cimini. Incredibly, the 2018 draft pick is the team’s longest-tenured player, and he’s earned a reputation as a hard worker and loyal player. As Cimini notes, Shepard is now the biggest player on the team with Folorunso Fatukasi gone, and that could mean the veteran will see a more significant role in run-stopping situations.
  • Jets offensive lineman Mekhi Becton made it to mandatory minicamp after having sat out previous voluntary sessions, tweets ESPN’s Rich Cimini. The lineman didn’t practice, presumably because he’s still rehabbing his surgically repaired knee. Meanwhile, SNY’s Ralph Vacchiano writes that the player’s ability to return to the field could ultimately influence the left tackle competition between Becton and George Fant. “The faster that you can stamp ‘Hey, this is what we feel like is going to be our best going into Week 1 vs. Baltimore,’ the faster we can do that the better,” offensive coordinator Mike LaFleur said (via Vacchiano). “I think it will play itself out fairly quickly. When we get back (for training camp), we’re rolling, we’re running the football, and we’re going to see. It’ll all play itself out.”
  • At least one “prominent” member of the Patriots offense believed the coaching staff was unprepared at the start of the team’s offseason workout, according to Doug Kyed of Pro Football Focus. Following Josh McDaniels move to Las Vegas, the Patriots haven’t replaced anyone as their offensive coordinator, with former ST coordinator Joe Judge and former defensive coordinator Matt Patricia apparently taking on larger roles on offense. However, it sounds like the coaches are settling into roles, with Kyed describing Judge as the “passing game coordinator” and Patricia as the “running game coordinator.” Naturally, head coach Bill Belichick recently swatted away any questions about the offensive play calling. “If you’re asking about game plans, we’re months away from that — months,” Belichick said. “Months away. Months. What plays are we calling? Mini-camp plays?”

Latest On Jets’ George Fant

Left tackle George Fant was one of a few bright spots for the Jets in 2021, and he is in line for a significant role on the team this season. When speaking to the media yesterday, he provided updates on his health and contract statuses, among other things. 

The 29-year-old said that he is “doing well” with respect to his recovery from offseason knee surgery (Twitter link via SNY’s Ralph Vacchiano). He added that he will be recovered in time for training camp. Assuming that is the case, he will be available to continue as a starter, looking to build off his surprising level of play at left tackle last season. Between himself, Mekhi Becton and any lineman the team selects early in the upcoming draft, the Jets will have a number of options to fill out the tackle positions.

Given his high-end play in 2021 (he allowed only 18 pressures in 15 games, ranking him third in the league), Fant was reportedly in conversation with the Jets over a new contract last month. While nothing much as materialized since then, he did say his agent “has had some talks” with the team regarding a new deal. Fant has one year remaining on his current contract, with a scheduled cap hit of $11.1MM.

Further remarks Fant made, per Vacchiano, related to the current state of the Jets’ o-line. While the team lost Morgan Moses in free agency, they did add Pro Bowl guard Laken Tomlinson. He, along with 2021 first-rounder Alijah Vera-Tucker, figure to give the team an improved tandem at guard. Fant acknowledged the possibility of an addition as early as Round 1 tonight along the offensive front, but expressed confidence in the unit as-is, something which may be justified if, among other things, he can replicate his 2021 success.

Jets Considering Mekhi Becton At RT

After a knee injury knocked him out for the majority of the 2021 campaign, Mekhi Becton is expected to slide back into the starting lineup…just maybe not at left tackle. When speaking with reporters today, Jets head coach Joe Douglas wouldn’t definitively say whether Becton will slot in at his usual starting spot.

“[W]e are operating like Mekhi is going to be one of our two tackles,” Douglas said (via Brian Costello of the New York Post on Twitter). “That’s our expectation that he’s going to come back ready to roll. I know he’s fired up to get back on the field and compete.”

When the Jets drafted Becton with the 11th-overall pick in the 2020 draft, he was expected to be their starting left tackle for the foreseeable future. He started 13 games at the position during his rookie campaign, and he was expected to slide back into that spot in 2021. However, midway through the first game of the 2021 season, Becton suffered a knee injury that ultimately kept him off the field for the rest of the year.

As ESPN’s Rich Cimini writes, the Jets may not be committing to Becton at left tackle in the hopes that the player “gets the message and fulfills his immense potential.” Further, Cimini opines that George Fant, who started 15 games at left tackle last year, deserves to defend his starting spot. There’s a good chance that the loser of the LT competition would simply slide over to RT, but Cimini leaves open the possibility that the Jets could select an offensive tackle with the fourth-overall pick, which would force one of Fant or Becton to the bench.

Jets, George Fant To Meet Over New Deal

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 BectonThe 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-Tuckerwho has experience at both guard and tackle dating back to his time in college.

Jets Rumors: Draft, Hamilton, Thibodeaux 

The Jets are high on safety Kyle Hamilton, according to sources who spoke with Rich Cimini of Armed with picks Nos. 4 and 10, the Notre Dame standout should be there for Gang Green, if that’s who they want to take. Still, with several weeks to go between now and the draft, the Jets have ample time to consider all of their options, including players at more premium positions.

Here’s more out of East Rutherford, via Cimini:

  • The Jets are “always looking at” big defensive linemen, as head coach Robert Saleh noted recently, and that could lead them to Oregon’s Kayvon Thibodeaux. Cimini hears that the Jets would be hard-pressed to pass on him if he slips to No. 4. He’s long been thought to be a candidate for the No. 1 overall pick, but it’s definitely possible that Thibodeaux could fall to the Jets at No. 4.
  • Some insiders believe that GM Joe Douglas will zero in on the offensive line with a tackle at one of their two Top 10 picks. That’ll largely be dictated by the George Fant / Mekhi Becton situation, Cimini hears. The Jets may opt to leave Fant on the left side and move Becton to the right. If they follow through on that, that’s a sign that the Jets are losing confidence in Becton’s ability to shed weight and, by extension, his long-term potential.
  • While some see the cornerback position as a major draft target, Saleh continues to pump up his current trio of Bryce Hall, Brandin Echols, and Michael Carter II. “The challenge for those three is to find the ball. Once they do that, they’ll be right there with the upper echelon of the league.” Combined, the three CBs tallied just two interceptions last year.
  • Braxton Berrios could be too rich for the Jets’ blood this offseason. One agent predicted that the speedy wideout will look for top slot money, which would put him at ~$9MM/year.
  • Jets tight ends coach Ron Middleton is fond of Colorado State’s Trey McBride and Ohio State’s Jeremy Ruckert, but it’s not clear if the scouting department likes either player enough in Round 2. The Jets could pass on that group of pass-catching TEs, Cimini hears, which would prompt them to spend in free agency instead.