Jets ‘Working out’ Mekhi Becton Insurance Policy With 28 NFL Starts: Report

Kendall Lamm

Getty Free agent offensive tackle Kendall Lamm with the Cleveland Browns on August 30, 2020.

Editor’s Note: Pro Football Network insider Aaron Wilson has since updated his initial report, clarifying that OT Kendall Lamm worked out for the New York Giants on Monday, July 25, not the New York Jets.

New York Jets fans, your prayers may soon be answered.

It feels like the NYJ community has been calling for a veteran backup at offensive tackle all offseason and July 25 brought positive news on that front. According to Pro Football Network insider Aaron Wilson, the Jets are “working out veteran offensive tackle Kendall Lamm, [per league sources].”

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Who Is Kendall Lamm?

Wilson elaborated, noting that Lamm is “a former undrafted free agent from Appalachian State who has also started for the Houston Texans and Cleveland Browns.” He spent the 2021 campaign with the Tennessee Titans as their veteran swing tackle — a role the Jets are looking to fill.

Now 30 years of age, Lamm has logged 28 career starts over his seven-year tenure in the NFL. His largest role came in 2018 with the Texans, as a 13-game starter at right tackle.

Lamm has also appeared in 86 NFL games with plenty of experience to call upon. He stands at 6-foot-5 and 310 pounds, and was released by the Titans to save cap space in March. According to Wilson, “Lamm [had] signed a two-year contract last season and was scheduled to make $3.3 million this season before being released.”

He played 12 outings in Tennessee with a lone start but did not grade well on Pro Football Focus. Over 86 blocking snaps, Lamm was credited with a 57.3 in the run game and a 46.7 in pass protection.

To be fair, this was easily the journeyman’s worst season according to PFF. Lamm’s pass-blocking marks have only dropped below 65.0 twice over his career, in 2021 and 2017. He has been charged with 13 sacks allowed in seven years of part-time play, with 35 quarterback pressures allowed during his 2018 run as a starter (13 games).

Lamm has not been as consistent as a run blocker throughout his time in the league but the Jets would be hiring him as an O-tackle insurance policy. If he was ever called upon to start, his priority would be keeping Zach Wilson safe not spearheading the rushing attack.

At the very least, he can always help out in the red zone.

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Why Is This Such a Major Area of Need?

Several offensive tackles have been connected to the Jets this offseason after the departure of Morgan Moses — both loosely and directly in the case of Riley Reiff. If reports are accurate, Lamm will join Reiff in the visits category, while others like Eric Fisher, Duane Brown and Jason Peters have been speculative at this time.

Whoever the eventual signing ends up being, it’s good to hear the Jets are back on the horse after Reiff left without a contract.

We’ve said it at nauseam this spring, neither Mekhi Becton or George Fant has ever played an entire NFL campaign without missing at least one start. The former has appeared in less than 50% of the Jets’ outings since entering the league in 2020.

Fant has been much sturdier since joining Gang Green, starting 29 games out of a potential 33.

Having said that, both are coming off knee surgeries and neither can be relied on without some form of an insurance policy. Lamm can be that swing, and although he’s not as strong of an option as Moses was in 2021, few are and he’s a definite upgrade on Conor McDermott and Chuma Edoga.

Lamm would also know his role and slide into it immediately, while other veterans could be holding out for a guaranteed starting job. If general manager Joe Douglas wants to patch this hole up as soon as possible, we could see him ink a swing tackle like the Appalachian State product before camp gets underway.

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