$40 Million Jets Veteran on Recruiting Trail, Hints at Inside Scoop

Alijah Vera-Tucker, Jets

Getty New York Jets offensive lineman Alijah Vera-Tucker celebrating with some teammates after a big play.

The New York Jets are going all out in their efforts to bring new talent to the team in 2023.

Offensive lineman Laken Tomlinson sat down with me for a 32-plus-minute interview this week. During our chat, the NFL veteran revealed that he has been on the recruiting trail this offseason.

“Oh yeah man I do what I can. I try to chime in wherever I can, help out wherever I can, and if I see a guy you know a free agent or anything I’m like hey I try to woo them over here to the Jets. [I want] to show them what kind of team we can be in 2023. I try to play my part [and] obviously as a veteran you know getting the right type of guys in the building.

There is a lot of chime going around about a lot of people, I can’t really say much on air but let’s just say I’m very excited for some of the moves that JD [Joe Douglas] and coach [Robert] Saleh are going to make this offseason. We’ll see what happens and obviously when the time comes everybody will know.”

Do the Jets Players Know Something We Don’t?

After the clip was posted to Twitter a lot of Jets fans responded with a potential conspiracy theory.

Sean Rhodes said, “I truly believe the players know what’s up and it’s just a matter of time.”

Tom Spicer said something similar and has noticed a pattern recently with “multiple interviews with different players hinting towards someone is coming but they can not say who it is.”

Tomlinson gave a few hints during our conversation that he might be aware of something, but he wasn’t allowed to disclose it live on the show.

That isn’t the first time a Jets player has hinted at having some additional knowledge this offseason.

Defensive Rookie of the Year Sauce Gardner said “I know a little something about something” when asked about the Aaron Rodgers-Jets rumors during an appearance on Good Morning Football.

Laken Tomlinson Speaks out on Recruiting, Looking Ahead to 2023

Tomlinson signed a three-year deal for $40 million with $23.9 million of that in total guarantees last offseason.

He was expected to be a key cog on the offensive line for the green and white as their big money free agent addition.

For whatever reason things didn’t go according to plan in 2022. The 31-year-old had a disappointing campaign according to the Pro Football Focus grades:

  • 56.8 overall
  • 46.9 run block
  • 70.2 pass block

Quite frankly it was a rough year for the Jets’ offensive line as a whole and a big reason for that was a slew of injuries.

At varying points of the season, the Jets lost key guys for large portions of the season like Mekhi Becton, Max Mitchell, George Fant, Duane Brown, and Alijah Vera-Tucker to name a few.

Despite all that volatility around him, Tomlinson continued to be a pillar of consistency from a durability standpoint.

He played in all 17 games last season and that continues a stretch that dates back to the 2017 season. Tomlinson has started 97 consecutive games across six straight years.

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