New York Jets – Offensive Line Scenarios

Michael Meegan goes through different scenarios for the New York Jets offensive line in 2020

The best case scenario, the worst case scenario, and middle of the road scenario that sits on the table for the New York Jets offensive this upcoming season

Best case 

LT- Kelvin Beachum – A polarizing figure amongst Jets fans as Beachum was their best linemen in 2019 but their line was terrible so what does this really say? The splits for Sam Darnold with and without Beachum are staggering and in this scenario the Jets retain only one starter from 2019.  

LG – Joe Thuney- The best offensive linemen available in free agency. Thuney is an elite guard who has never missed a start and did not commit a penalty in 2019.  He is as steady as they come and has a pedigree of winning that Joe Douglas wants to be a foundational piece of the culture he is building.

C- Cesar Ruiz – In a favorable world he falls to the Jets at #48. Ruiz is versatile as he can play both guard and center and is going to be a day one starter in the NFL.  Ruiz would be hopefully snapping balls to Sam Darnold for the next decade and if he is on the board they should sprint to put the card in.  

RG – Graham Glasgow – Glasgow is a Joe Douglas type player.  He is as tough as they come and can play both center and guard. He did not allow a sack this year and is an absolute mauler in the run game.  He would complete a ferocious interior part of the offensive line that would be integral in Jets fans seeing the old Le’Veon Bell again.

RT – Jedrick Wills- Pre combine, I would have thought the Jets would have zero chance at getting Wills as he has been deemed by most as the top OT in the draft.  Becton and Wirfs combine performances have stolen the spotlight and that gives me some hope he could be there at 11. 

Worst case

LT- Jason Peters – Peters has been an incredible LT for the Eagles but at 38 it is safe to say his best days are behind him.  Peters is still a fine player but he cannot be relied on to play 16 games and in this scenario all the top OT’s in the draft are off the board at 11 and relying on Peters to be your guy for the whole year is scary.

LG – Quinton Spain – Spain had an excellent season for Buffalo and looks set to cash in on a long-term deal after taking a one year prove it deal with the Bills.  Spain is a solid player but I would be hesitant to give him big money to be the best member of your line as I think he benefited playing next too two very good players in Buffalo.  

C -Matt Hennessy – A solid center prospect. Great value if the Jets can get him in round 3.  I just question whether Hennessy can start on day 1 and if he can’t anytime that Jonathan Harrison remains a weak link. 

RG – Alex Lewis -A nice move by Joe Douglas to get as a depth piece. Lewis played well in spurts filling in for Osemele and Winters in 2019.  Lewis battled injuries towards the end of the season and his play dipped as a result. I think Lewis is nothing more than a depth piece and having him as a starter leaves the Jets with more of a question then an answer.

RT – Chuma Edoga-  Edoga had a few moments at RT in 2019 but once he had to switch to LT his play dropped significantly and injuries ended his season. I feel better about Edoga playing RT the LT but this season is crucial for Sam Darnold and Edoga being a starter on a O line that looks shaky at best. 

Middle of the Road

LT- Andrew Thomas –  Thomas is a very solid OT who can play both RT/LT and who I think will most likely be the Jets pick at 11.  He is not as good as Tristan Whirfs or Jedrick Wills and ceiling is lower than Mekhi Becton but Thomas will be reliable in a very similar way De’Brickashaw Ferguson was for a decade, so he should excite Jets fans. 

LG – Graham Glasgow – I may be slightly optimistic with the Jets landing Glasgow in this scenario because he is going to have plenty of suitors but he ticks every Joe Douglas Box. 

C- Lloyd Cushenberry – The man who was the anchor of the LSU offensive line that helped protect Heisman winner Joe Burrow and helped lead them to a national championship.  Cushenberry is a plug and play day one starter experience in a spread offense. I think the Jets will target with their pick at the top of the 3rd round.  

RG – Alex Lewis- I feel better about Lewis being a starter when he is surrounded by better players in this scenario. I still do not view Lewis as a starter long term.  It is near impossible to find five new starters at OL in one offseason so Lewis will suffice for 2020 and hopefully an upgrade is found in 2021.

RT-  Jack Conklin –  Conklin is a very solid RT but for him to be a New York Jet he is likely going to need a deal that tops Lane Johnson’s of 18 million per year and Conklin is not on the same level as someone like Lane.  I do not think the matters to Joe Douglas and I think he ultimately lands Conklin, who is decent in pass protection but an absolute beast in the run game and he would be vital in helping Leveon Bell bounce back this year.  Everyone gets overpaid in FA and with Sam Darnold on a rookie deal the risk is worth it.