The offensive line, for example, was not good enough by the eye test or the analytics — and center Connor McGovern was a key culprit on the blocking unit with a team-leading five quarterback pressures allowed according to TruMedia and The Athletic’s Zack Rosenblatt.
“It’s time to dust off [rookie center] Joe Tippmann,” Jets X-Factor film expert and media member Robby Sabo voiced after the game. “Get the young blood going and let him roll. They desperately need another stud to go along with [Alijah Vera-Tucker]. Tippmann gives them the best chance of that.”
SNY and NBC Sports analyst Connor Rogers agreed on September 18, stating: “My earliest Jets all-22 [film study] thought is it’s probably time to give Joe Tippmann a shot at center.”
Another social media theory called for the Jets to bench left tackle Duane Brown for Tippmann rather than McGovern, moving the latter to right guard and Vera-Tucker to either left or right tackle — with Mekhi Becton starting on the opposite book-end — but it makes more sense to swap one player than to ask three or four starters to change positions.
With Aaron Rodgers Gone, the Future Is Now for the Jets & Joe Tippmann
The Jets planned to begin the year with a veteran offense around Aaron Rodgers, but NYJ plans rarely play out as anticipated. With Zach Wilson at quarterback, the future is now — for better or for worse — and Tippmann is a huge part of that equation.
Does anyone really care about the 2023 second rounder learning on the job when the offense runs the ball for 24 yards — not including Wilson’s QB scrambles or Ashtyn Davis’ trick punt — and the pass protection allows a “career-high 54%” pressure rate on Wilson “against 4 or fewer pass rushers” according to ESPN’s Rich Cimini?
Yes, the Cowboys flaunt one of the best defensive lines in the NFL, but this NYJ blocking unit was still manhandled in every area versus Dallas. And if you’re going to make some changes, replacing McGovern with Tippmann is the easiest place to start.
A fourth-year veteran of the organization, McGovern has started 50 games since 2020. He’s certainly had his ups and downs as a Jet and the franchise nearly moved on from him in free agency this spring, but general manager Joe Douglas elected to bring him back after his market failed to pick up around the league.
In fact, one could argue that the Jets re-signed McGovern to a backup salary in 2023, and that’s exactly what he should eventually turn into with a high-end talent like Tippmann on the roster.
Quietly, Jets’ Mekhi Becton Has Performed Well at Right Tackle
One of the few bright spots for the Jets offensive line has been Becton. After a rocky training camp and a ton of uncertainty heading into his fourth NFL campaign, the “Big Ticket” has looked like his old self through the first two weeks of the year.
Becton only allowed one QB pressure in Dallas according to TruMedia and Rosenblatt, and he also played pretty well in Week 1. Pro Football Focus charged him with three pressures against the Buffalo Bills, but each was just a hurry rather than a QB hit or sack.
The Jets also appear to run the ball better behind Becton and AVT on the righthand side, rather than Brown and Laken Tomlinson on the left.
“Jets ran to the right *twice* in this game,” Jets X-Factor film analyst Michael Nania noted after Week 2. “Both got 6 yards. All other RB carries: 18 yards on 8 carries (2.3 [yards per carry]).”
“Maybe running behind Becton & AVT is good, and running behind Duane Brown vs. Micah Parsons isn’t, just a guess,” he concluded sarcastically. The Jets next test is at home against the 0-2 New England Patriots.