Jets Week 13 Injury Could Mean the Return of an Offensive Liability

Zach Wilson, Laurent Duvernay-Tardif

Getty New York Jets quarterback Zach Wilson celebrates a touchdown with his offensive teammates.

The New York Jets could probably fill a second roster with the number of injuries they’ve had this season and the Week 14 forecast does not look promising as of now.

Gang Green released their Thursday injury report and five players were listed as non-participants in practice. Each is currently a key member of the depth chart too, outside of tight end Trevon Wesco.

Elijah Moore (quad), Michael Carter II (concussion), Tevin Coleman (concussion) and Laurent Duvernay-Tardif (ankle) were all sidelined today and it appears one or two of these players could be trending towards an absence.

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Injury Brings Back Bad Memories

As of now, the Jets remain “hopeful” Moore can suit up and the two concussions will come down to passing the NFL protocols. The fourth name on the list could mean trouble.

According to ESPN’s Rich Cimini, right guard Duvernay-Tardif is “not looking good” for Sunday and his replacement may inspire some nightmares within the fanbase.

If ‘LDT’ is a no-go, Greg Van Roten would likely return to retake the RG duties in his place. Before Joe Douglas traded for his replacement, ‘GVR’ was the subject of a ton of criticism from analysts and fans.

Labeled the “liability” of the Jets offensive line, Van Roten struggled in both the run and pass game. Jets X-Factor analyst Michael Nania noted the difference in the rushing attack during the three outings with Duvernay-Tardif on the field.

With the former Chiefs O-lineman blocking, New York ran for an average of 6.19 (vs. Miami), 4.81 (at Houston), and 5.00 (vs. Philadelphia) yards per carry. Nania added that “all three marks [were] better than all [nine] games with GVR as the starting [right guard] (their best with him was 4.75 and they only hit 4.0 [yards per carry] three times).”

To make matters worse, Pro Football Focus actually graded Van Roten lower in pass protection than run-blocking at a 55.3 on the season. By their count, he’s allowed 34 quarterback pressures and three sacks off 447 pass-blocking snaps. That’s 0.076 pressures allowed per pass play.

After a rough first game back — keep in mind he had not played since 2019 — LDT has only allowed one QB pressure his past two starts. His PFF grade in pass protection is 79.95 over that two-game span.

Analytics aside, it’s clear watching them play that the offense just runs smoother without Van Roten. Cross your fingers if LDT misses practice tomorrow.

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Zach Wilson Has Work Cut out for Him

Some may see this as a preemptive excuse but it’s also a fact. With the number of injuries the Jets have on offense right now, Zach Wilson may not have much help in Week 14 against a sturdy New Orleans Saints defense.

NOLA’s unit currently ranks 14th in the NFL in yards allowed per game, but they have been much stronger against the run than the pass. The Saints allow 96.4 rush yards per game (fifth-ranked) and 250.1 pass yards per game (22nd-ranked) — a positive for Wilson.

They also rank tied for fifth in interceptions with 14, so they’re an opportunistic group.

If New Orleans shuts down a rushing attack that involves question marks like GVR, Ty Johnson and Austin Walter, the entire offense will fall on the rookie’s shoulders once again.

With playmakers like Corey Davis and running back Michael Carter already missing and Moore questionable with that quad issue, that could be problematic. If the Ole Miss product does miss Week 14, Wilson’s list of weapons could look something like this.

  • Running back: Ty Johnson, Austin Walter, La’Mical Perine.
  • Wide receiver: Keelan Cole, Denzel Mims, Jeff Smith, Vyncint Smith.
  • Slot receiver: Jamison Crowder, Braxton Berrios.
  • Tight end: Ryan Griffin, Kenny Yeboah, Nick Bawden (FB).

This looks more like the skill-position room under Adam Gase than Mike LaFleur and Robert Saleh — talk about déjà vu!

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