George Fant

Latest On Seahawks’ Offensive Line

Though the Seahawks’ path forward at offensive tackle seems secure, the team has lots of questions to face concerning the interior line. The situation should lead to a few position battles worth watching this summer.

At offensive tackle, the situation is simple: 2022 first- and third-round picks Charles Cross and Abraham Lucas are set to continue manning the starting spots they’ve held since their rookie season. The only questions mark here comes with Lucas’ health, after the 25-year-old missed all but six games last year as he struggled to come back from offseason surgery on his shoulder. Even if either player misses some time, Seattle brought back a former tackle of theirs in George Fant after four years away from the team. Most recently, Fant started 13 games for the Texans last year and should provide an improvement to the backup options utilized last season in Seattle.

At guard, the team inked veteran free agent Laken Tomlinson, who should slide into the starting job at left guard. At right guard, the Seahawks return Anthony Bradford, who started 10 games as a fourth-round rookie last year. The team also utilized a third-round selection this year to draft UConn’s Christian Haynes, who played exclusively at right guard throughout college. Bradford wasn’t a world-beater last year, with Pro Football Focus (subscription required) ranking him as the league’s 62nd-best guard out of 79 graded players, so Haynes will likely be given every opportunity to compete for the starting job opposite Tomlinson. Bob Condotta of The Seattle Times points out depth guard McClendon Curtis as another under the radar option. Though listed on the roster last year as a tackle, he’s now listed at guard, where he started 30 games in college.

The real questions come at center, where the Seahawks have stacked up a number of inexperienced options. Currently, the depth chart holds Nick Harris, Olusegun Oluwatimi, and Mike Novitsky. Harris, a 2020 fifth-round pick for the Browns, only started four games over the course of his rookie deal, though he earned plenty of snaps on special teams or on overloaded lines in Cleveland. Oluwatimi started one game as a rookie fifth-round pick for Seattle last year, though he also got plenty of special teams experience. He also played over half the team’s offensive snaps in two other games last season. Novitsky is a long shot to make an impact in this conversation. An undrafted rookie out of Kansas, Novitsky doesn’t trail the others much in experience but lacks the drafted pedigree.

Three spots are generally set: Cross at left tackle, Tomlinson beside him as left guard, and Lucas opposite the two at right tackle. You could even say four spots are set, if you decide to count Fant’s job as a swing tackle. At right guard, Seattle knows Bradford can handle the job, if necessary, but they will hope that competition with Haynes will either push Bradford to improve or reveal a better option in Haynes or even, possibly, Curtis. Center is where things remain dire. The team may strike gold in the three unlikely options they hold, but external additions may be on the horizon if no one takes hold of the starting job convincingly.

OL Notes: Jets, Alt, Titans, Jones, Steelers, Shelton, Rams, Jones, Ravens, Giants, Hawks

Once the draft moves past its quarterback stage, wide receivers are expected to be the focus. This draft also features a few high-level tackle prospects that should go off the board soon after, potentially breaking up the QB-WR string that could lead off this year’s event. Arguably the top tackle available, Joe Alt, has begun his run of pre-draft visits. The Jets and Titans used “30” visits on the Notre Dame tackle this week,’s Ian Rapoport tweets. A first-team All-American in back-to-back years and the top tackle on Daniel Jeremiah’s big board (No. 8 overall), Alt should not need to wait long before his name comes off the board.

The Titans (No. 7) and Jets (No. 10) figure to be two prime suitors. The Jets are not as needy here compared to the start of free agency, having reacquired Morgan Moses via trade and signed Tyron Smith. The All-Decade blocker is among the NFL’s most injury-prone players, and with both Smith and Moses going into age-33 seasons, a tackle-in-waiting would benefit a Jets team that has encountered regular issues up front over the past several years. The Titans cut Andre Dillard and have not added a tackle, potentially making them the Alt floor. Though, the Chargers should not be entirely ruled out — now that Jim Harbaugh is running the show — of a first-round tackle investment to pair with Rashawn Slater.

Here is the latest from the O-line ranks around the league:

Seahawks To Sign S Rayshawn Jenkins, T George Fant

MARCH 15: The Seahawks are giving Jenkins a two-year, $12MM deal,’s Jeremy Fowler tweets, noting $6.6MM will come the safety’s way in Year 1. Fant will collect up to $14MM on his deal, per KPRC2’s Aaron Wilson, who adds the veteran tackle will receive a $3.7MM signing bonus.

Multiple teams pursued Fant, according to Wilson, but John Schneider confirmed (via the Seattle Times’ Bob Condotta) the Seahawks are not planning a two-Fant starting lineup. While Noah Fant is back at tight end, George Fant will work as a swingman behind starters Charles Cross and Abraham Lucas. Considering the investments the Seahawks made in their young tackles, this is not surprising.

MARCH 13: After moving on from both Jamal Adams and Quandre Diggs, the Seahawks had a need on the backend. Those veteran safeties will not be in place for 2024, but Rayshawn Jenkins will. The latter has agreed to a deal with Seattle, Tom Pelissero of NFL Network reports.

In another free agent deal, the Seahawks will bring back George Fant. The veteran tackle is set to return to where his career began, Pelissero notes in a follow-up. Fant will provide depth at the tackle spot on a team featuring two young starters.

Jenkins was part of Jacksonville’s cost-cutting measures in the lead-in to free agency. He had a three-year run in Duval County, remaining a full-time starter over that span. The 30-year-old racked up five interceptions during the past two seasons, adding 21 pass deflections in that time. To little surprise, Jenkins was quickly on the radar of interested teams after his Jags release went through.

The Seahawks and 49ers had Jenkins visits lined up, and he has elected to head to Seattle. A first-team role should await the Miami alum given the decision to cut Adams and Diggs in cost-shedding moves. Seattle invested in Julian Love last offseason, but he is only under contract through 2024. The ex-Giant could play his way into a new Seattle pact with his play this season, and doing so will come about with a veteran of 109 games alongside him in the form of Jenkins.

Fant spent the first three years of his career in the Emerald City, logging 24 starts across 46 games with the Seahawks. He worked as a full-time starter with the Jets from 2020-22, seeing time at both left and right tackle. He took a one-year Texans deal last offseason, starting 13 contests and playing almost exclusively at the RT spot. That could come in handy with Seattle.

2022 third-rounder Abraham Lucas was limited to six games last season due to injury, and Fant will provide a veteran starting option if necessary. Lucas struggled when on the field in 2023, drawing a PFF grade of 53.1 (a steep decline from that of his rookie season). Fant, 31, earned a much better evaluation last year in a bounce-back from his final Jets season. He could see playing time with Seattle for the second time in his career if needed at either tackle spot.

Texans Designate Tytus Howard For Return, Place Kendrick Green On IR; Howard To Play Left Guard

OCTOBER 8: The Texans will indeed have Howard and Tunsil back in the lineup for today’s game against the Falcons, per Rapoport. However, as Wilson reports, Howard will be returning to the interior of the line and will slot in at left guard. Earlier in the week, Wilson published a full-length article discussing the possbility of that alignment and noted that the presence of George Fant, who has played well at right tackle in Howard’s absence, could allow Fant to stay right where he is.

It is unclear if Howard at LG and Fant at RT will be a permanent arrangement, but if they perform at a high level today, it will be difficult for head coach DeMeco Ryans to make a change in that regard.

OCTOBER 5: Kendrick Green will not join Howard and Scruggs in the IR-return picture. The recent trade acquisition underwent meniscus surgery that is expected to sideline him for the rest of the season,’s Ian Rapoport notes. While Green did not suffer any ligament tears and is in line to be ready for Houston’s offseason program, he will head into a contract year coming having played in just four games over the past two seasons.

OCTOBER 4: The Texans have seen C.J. Stroud show considerable promise early in his rookie season, and the No. 2 overall pick has done so behind a backup-laden offensive line. That group is beginning to move toward full strength.

As expected, the Texans designated Tytus Howard to return from IR on Wednesday. Today marks the start of most teams’ pre-Week 5 practices. With this week doubling as the first for players on IR, NFI and PUP lists to be designated for return, Howard is one of several recovering performers to see his 21-day activation clock started.

Howard broke his hand in two places early in training camp and underwent surgery. He joined center Juice Scruggs and guard Kenyon Green in being placed on IR. Scruggs remains on Houston’s injured list, but a potential Week 6 return is in play for the second-round rookie. Green is out for the season, being placed on IR before teams finalized their initial 53-man rosters. While the 2022 first-round pick was part of the Texans’ O-line plans, he will need months to recover. Howard and Scruggs, however, are on the road back to action.

Houston gave Howard a three-year, $56MM extension this offseason. That deal followed pacts for Laremy Tunsil and trade acquisition Shaq Mason. The latter has been the only healthy Houston first-stringer up front. Howard, a five-year starter who has settled in at right tackle after being tried at guard and on the blind side, may well be back in uniform by Week 5. Tunsil has a decent chance of coming back as well. The eighth-year left tackle has missed the past three games, but Tunsil returned to practice Wednesday. Optimism exists the high-priced edge protector will be back in place Sunday, KPRC2’s Aaron Wilson notes.

While starters are preparing to return, the Texans did sustain another blow up front. Kendrick Green is now on IR, the team announced. The late-summer trade acquisition suffered a torn meniscus in his right knee in Week 4, per Wilson, who adds surgery is likely. Green avoided ligament tears, but he must now miss at least four games.

The former Steelers third-round pick had been pressed into duty, starting the past three games. Those not only marked Green’s first starts since his rookie year but also his first appearances since that 2021 season. Adding multiple new interior O-line starters in 2022, Pittsburgh benched the interior O-lineman and unloaded him a year later. Pro Football Focus ranks Green 38th at guard thus far, showing a glimpse at improvement after a rough rookie year.

Teams are allotted eight IR activations per season. Howard will join punter Cameron Johnston, whom the team also designated for return, as two activations. Scruggs is set to take up a third slot for the Texans, who have started 2-2 behind strong early-season play from Stroud.

OL Notes: Smith, Texans, Rams, Bears

The Cowboys are going with a “best five” configuration up front, shifting course months after Jerry Jones discussed a plan of keeping Tyler Smith at tackle. Smith is back at guard, but he may not be a lock to start the season on time. The second-year blocker suffered a hamstring strain, David Moore of the Dallas Morning News tweets. Jones expects Smith to play in Week 1; the 2022 first-round pick did not miss a game last season. Dallas has lost its starting left guard in free agency in each of the past two offseasons, seeing Connor Williams and Connor McGovern defect to the AFC East.

One of the backup options, Josh Ball, is on IR. Ball is battling hip and groin pain, and the Morning News’ Michael Gehlken notes he is expected to miss around two months. A 2021 fourth-rounder, Ball is not expected to need surgery. The Cowboys kept eight O-linemen, with rookies Asim Richards and T.J. Bass joining Chuma Edoga as backups.

Here is the latest from NFL O-lines:

  • Texans right tackle Tytus Howard returned to practice earlier this week, working out with a cast on his injured left hand. While the fifth-year lineman is on the verge of returning, KPRC2’s Aaron Wilson notes George Fant is expected to play in place of Howard in Week 1. Howard, who signed a Texans extension in July, underwent surgery to repair a broken hand in early August. Fant worked as a regular Jets starter — at left and right tackle — throughout the 2020 and ’21 seasons; injuries limited him to seven games last year.
  • Josh Jones filled in for D.J. Humphries as the Cardinals’ left tackle last season, but the recently traded blocker is back at guard. The Texans have Jones in place as their starting left guard going into the season, Wilson tweets. Jones is replacing 2022 first-rounder Kenyon Green, who is on season-ending IR. Jones spent the 2021 season as a primary Cardinals starting guard. The Texans will also be without center Juice Scruggs to start the season; the second-rounder is on short-term IR with a hamstring injury.
  • The Rams gave Joseph Noteboom a three-year, $40MM deal to replace Andrew Whitworth in 2022, but after another season-ending injury, Whitworth’s would-be heir apparent lost his job. The Rams are going with Alaric Jackson at left tackle, per The Athletic’s Jourdan Rodrigue, who adds Noteboom is back at guard (subscription required). Noteboom worked at guard early in his career and was mentioned as a guard option this offseason, but he had played on the outside since becoming Los Angeles’ swing tackle in 2020. The Rams also added Kevin Dotson from the Steelers, and while Dotson has started 30 career games (including 17 last year), Rodrigue adds the team views him as a depth piece. A former UDFA, Jackson started six games last season before becoming one of the many Ram blockers forced off the field due to health issues. Blood clots ended Jackson’s 2022 slate.
  • Previously set to shift back to center, Cody Whitehair is at guard to start his eighth Bears season. Teven Jenkins‘ injury will shift Whitehair to left guard and Lucas Patrick to center, Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune notes. Recent trade acquisition Dan Feeney is in place as Chicago’s backup center. Jenkins is on IR to start the season. Whitehair spent the past four seasons at guard but began his career with three slates at center. Patrick has played both guard and center. The 2022 free agency addition was ticketed to start at center last season, but injuries limited the ex-Packer to seven games.

Texans, T George Fant Agree To Deal

Not long after a workout in Houston, George Fant has landed a deal. The veteran offensive tackle is joining the Texans on a one-year contract worth up to $4MM, reports Aaron Wilson of KPRC2 (Twitter link).

Wilson adds that Fant had offers in place from other teams, but elected to join Houston. A starting role is out of the question unless either member of the Texans’ first-team tandem (Laremy Tunsil and the recently-extended Tytus Howard) were to suffer an injury. Fant, 31, will provide a veteran presence and considerable experience off the bench if called into action, though.

The Titans were one of the teams to show interest in Fant, hosting him for a free agent visit last weekend. They did the same with Chris Hubbard, however, and elected to sign the latter yesterday. It comes as little surprise that Fant has reacted to that development by taking a different deal inside the AFC South. He will join a Texans team which was in need of an addition for the swing tackle role.

2020 fourth-rounder Charlie Heck (who has started 17 games during his three-year Texans tenure) is currently on the PUP list. Fant will thus have plenty of reps available during training camp, as he looks to settle into his third career team. The Western Kentucky alum spent three years each with the Seahawks and Jets prior to his 2023 free agent period.

Fant started all but one of his appearances in New York, and he was one of many O-linemen to suffer injury troubles for the Jets last season. A knee issue limited him to eight games, and after discussing an extension the offseason prior, team and club parted ways at the start of the new league year. The Jets have several options to sort through at both the left and right tackle spots, positions at which Fant has experience. While his former team works through their various combinations, Fant will provide the Texans with a capable backup swing tackle.

Titans Audition OTs George Fant, Chris Hubbard

JULY 22: Tennessee hosted Fant as scheduled, while also taking a look at Chris Hubbard (Twitter link via Ian Rapoport of NFL Network). The latter has spent his entire career in the AFC North, seeing time at both guard and tackle with the Steelers and Brown. Hubbard (who also visited the Colts this offseason) has 49 starts to his name, and like Fant would represent a far more experienced Petit-Frere replacement than Tennessee’s internal options. 2021 second-rounder Dillon Radunz – who continues to recover from the ACL tear which ended his second career season in December – has been placed on the active/PUP list to begin training camp. That news could give the Titans added incentive to sign Fant, Hubbard or another veteran in the near future.

JULY 19: Nicholas Petit-Frere‘s six-game gambling suspension will have the Titans starting four new offensive linemen, but the team is likely aiming for a higher-end bridge option at right tackle.

Sitting as one of the top free agents available, George Fant is set for a Nashville trek. The veteran tackle will work out for the Titans on Saturday, Jordan Schultz of The Score tweets. Fant spent the past three seasons with the Jets, but he has been a free agent since his contract expired earlier this year.

This would be an interesting landing spot for Fant, seeing as Tennessee does not appear to have an opening for a full-time tackle starter. Petit-Frere started throughout last season, winning the RT job out of training camp. The 2022 third-round pick will seemingly be ready to reclaim his job after his suspension ends. That said, Schultz adds there is a good chance Fant will sign with the Titans assuming his workout goes well.

Fant-Jets extension rumors swirled last year, but nothing transpired. The Jets have an even more uncertain tackle situation than the Titans, with both Duane Brown and Mekhi Becton coming off injuries. The team signed longtime Nathaniel Hackett charge Billy Turner, however, and have 2022 draftee Max Mitchell in place as a backup option. Fant was also in play for the Dolphins earlier this year. Miami has since added Isaiah Wynn and Cedric Ogbuehi.

Fant, who turns 31 today, has made 60 career starts across a seven-year career. The ex-college basketball player played out a three-year, $30MM Jets deal, starting at both the left and right tackle spots. While Fant could bring valuable depth to a Titans team that struggled to keep its O-linemen healthy last season, he also could mix in for a starting role.

Fant, however, also missed much of last season with a knee injury. He played in just eight games, and Pro Football Focus ranked his injury-affected work as among the worst at the position last year. PFF did give Fant a top-40 tackle grade in 2021, when he replaced Becton at left tackle. Should Fant sign, it would be interesting to see if he ends up changing the Titans’ plans for their tackle posts. As of now, Andre Dillard is expected to play left tackle and team with a stopgap right-sider and then Petit-Frere after Week 6.

Considering a host of options to man the RT post during Petit-Frere’s time away, the Titans signing Fant would clear up their plans for first-rounder Peter Skoronski. Pegged as a guard by many NFL evaluators during the pre-draft process, Skoronski only played tackle at Northwestern. But the Titans gave him more guard work during the offseason program.

Latest On Eagles’ RG Competition; Team To Add OT?

Like many players who lined up at offensive tackle in college, Eagles third-round rookie Tyler Steen is, according to Bo Wulf of The Athletic (subscription required), set to play guard at the NFL level, at least in his first professional season. Which certainly makes sense, as Jordan Mailata and Lane Johnson are locked into the starting tackle jobs.

However, the decision to deploy Steen on the interior is notable for two reasons. One, it sets up an intriguing position battle at right guard between the rookie and 2022 second-rounder Cam Jurgens. Jurgens, a natural center, was drafted as the eventual replacement for five-time First Team All-Pro pivot Jason Kelce, but Kelce elected to put off retirement for another year and agreed to a new contract with Philadelphia in March. As such, there is only one starting spot available on the club’s O-line, and that is the RG post that was vacated when Isaac Seumalo defected to the Steelers in free agency this offseason.

Although Jurgens appeared in only 34 snaps as a rookie (28 of which came at center), he has the benefit of having spent a year learning the Eagles’ offense and the blocking schemes of OL coach Jeff Stoutland. He also lined up with the first-stringers during OTAs, and while that is obviously not as important as who gets the first-team reps in training camp, one would think that Jurgens has a leg up on Steen at the moment, even if the coaching staff has not tipped its hand one way or another.

The loser of the competition will nonetheless become a key reserve, as the guard depth presently consists of the likes of Sua Opeta, Tyrese Robinson, and Julian Good-Jones. The tackle depth behind Mailata and Johnson is similarly uninspiring, and since Steen is focusing his efforts on guard as opposed to tackle, Wulf expects GM Howie Roseman to add an OT before Week 1.

Of course, the market for quality tackles is largely bare at this point in the offseason, though George Fant remains available and would, in Wulf’s estimation, represent an ideal fit. Fant has extensive experience at both OT spots and could be waiting for a clearer path to a starting job to open up in camp. If such an opportunity does not become available, the Eagles have enough cap space (roughly $14MM as of the time of this writing) to entice him. Wulf names the Cardinals’ Kelvin Beachum as a potential trade target, as the rebuilding Arizona outfit used its top pick in this year’s draft on an elite offensive lineman (Paris Johnson Jr.) and could therefore see the 34-year-old Beachum as surplus to requirements, especially with longtime LT D.J. Humphries healthy again.

Wulf also sees wide receiver, inside linebacker, and pass rush as areas in which the Eagles could seek an upgrade, though he does not envision Roseman making a big splash at any of those spots, unless he can pounce on a pass rusher like Yannick Ngakoue that has lingered on the open market.

Dolphins Interested In George Fant, Unlikely To Exercise Fifth-Year Options On Austin Jackson, Noah Igbinoghene

Towards the end of February, Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald wrote that the Dolphins are unlikely to exercise the fifth-year option on right tackle Austin Jackson. In the ensuing weeks, there has been nothing to suggest that the ‘Fins are reconsidering that stance.

Indeed, as Barry Jackson tweeted on Friday, Miami has shown interest in free agent tackle George Fant, lending credence to previous reports that the club is expected to bring in competition for Austin Jackson. That also represents the first reported interest in Fant since free agency opened several days ago.

Austin Jackson, the No. 18 overall pick of the 2020 draft, has yet to live up to his first-round billing. Miami hoped that the USC product would become its long-term answer at left tackle, but in 13 games (12 starts) at the position in his rookie year, Jackson largely struggled. While he got some run at LT in his second professional season, most of his snaps came at left guard, with similarly mediocre results. He then opened the 2022 campaign as the Dolphins’ starting right tackle before suffering an ankle injury in Week 1 that essentially wiped out his season (he wound up playing in just two contests and 84 total snaps).

It comes as little surprise, then, that Miami would decline to exercise Jackson’s fifth-year option, which would lock in a fully-guaranteed $14.2MM salary for 2024. It is equally unsurprising that the team would seek to bring in competition for the RT job.

Fant, who is entering his age-31 season, signed a three-year contract with the Jets in 2020. He spent most of his first year in New York at right tackle, with generally uninspiring results. However, when he was moved to left tackle out of necessity in 2021, Fant blossomed, and his performance even led to extension talks with Gang Green last year. Unfortunately, he was limited to just eight games in 2022 due to knee trouble, and even when he was on the field, his work was not as strong as it was the season before.

The Dolphins used Greg Little and Brandon Shell as Jackson replacements last year, but both players are also out of contract. It seems Miami wants to see what else is out there, and Fant is someone who can at least provide depth at both tackle spots and who would stand a good chance of opening the season as the club’s starting right tackle.

In related news, it would be “unfathomable” if the Dolphins were to exercise cornerback Noah Igbinoghene‘s fifth-year option (worth $11.5MM) for 2024, per Barry Jackson. Igbinoghene, who was selected twelve picks after Austin Jackson in 2020, is clearly not well-regarded by head coach Mike McDaniel & Co., as he was a healthy scratch for eight games in 2022 even though the Dolphins were without their No. 2 and No. 3 corners (Byron Jones and Nik Needham).

Jones has been released and Needham re-signed over the last week, and the Dolphins of course made a big splash to acquire Jalen Ramsey from the Rams. As it stands, Ramsey and Xavien Howard will operate as Miami’s starting boundary corners, with Kader Kohou and Needham both above Igbinoghene on the depth chart.

Minor NFL Transactions: 1/7/23

Today’s minor transactions heading into the final Sunday of the regular season:

Arizona Cardinals

Atlanta Falcons

  • Promoted from practice squad: WR Josh Ali

Baltimore Ravens

Buffalo Bills

Carolina Panthers

Chicago Bears

Cincinnati Bengals

Cleveland Browns

Denver Broncos

Detroit Lions

Houston Texans

Indianapolis Colts

Jacksonville Jaguars

Los Angeles Chargers

Miami Dolphins

Minnesota Vikings

New England Patriots

New York Giants

New York Jets

Pittsburgh Steelers

San Francisco 49ers

Seattle Seahawks

Tampa Bay Buccaneers