Jets Youngster Breaks Silence on Position Change Drama

Alijah Vera-Tucker, Jets

Getty New York Jets offensive lineman Alijah Vera-Tucker working out during practice.

Much was made when the New York Jets announced that Alijah Vera-Tucker, their star-studded rookie, was changing positions this offseason.

If it ain’t broke don’t fix it crowd came out of the woodwork and raised a stink.

However, for the first time, this offseason AVT got to share his perspective on everything.

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Much Ado About Nothing

At the NFL’s owner meetings, head coach Robert Saleh announced that new signee Laken Tomlinson would be taking over at left guard. While second-year guard AVT would be flipping over to the right side.

The 30-year-old veteran has played and started 80 consecutive games over the last five years for the San Francisco 49ers. It wasn’t just quantity either, the big man had quality as well coming off of a Pro Bowl campaign in 2021.

On Tuesday, May 24, AVT finally got his opportunity to speak to the media about the positional change:

“You know first off I was hyped about it [the signing of Laken]. A guy coming from the same offense and coming off a Super Bowl appearance. Talking to JB (John Benton) and coach Saleh they asked me if I felt comfortable moving to right guard and I said yes. I had a couple of experiences there, about two years at USC, and at this point, I’ve been switching positions for the past 3-to-4 years so at this point I’m pretty used to it.”

The really interesting nugget he shared came at the end of his presser when AVT revealed that the coaching staff called him as soon as Tomlinson agreed to come to New York.

“They called me immediately after and talked to me about it and like I said I wasn’t worried about it at all. I actually told them yeah I’m moving to right guard because I feel comfortable with it. Why not have a Pro Bowl left guard? That can only better our offense.”

After all the overreactions after the news and drama from it on social media, AVT quelled all of that noise following his presser.

It’s a refreshing perspective from a 22-year-old who is willing to do whatever it takes for the team.

More Musical Chairs Could Be Coming

Speaking of musical chairs that may not be the only switching around we see in the trenches.

Last year Mekhi Becton got injured in the season opener versus the Carolina Panthers and forced George Fant to flip over.

Everything ended up working out beautifully making chicken salad out of chicken s***. However what about in 2022?

Saleh spoke at the Senior Bowl down in Mobile and made it clear that Fant earned the right to compete at left tackle this offseason.

We won’t get the full experience on that battle until mandatory minicamp and maybe not until training camp.

Although what we do know is Fant and Becton will be your starting offensive tackles, what we don’t know is who will be playing which side.

Although it is realistic that we could have a completely different starting line rotation (outside of Connor McGovern) from Week 1 of 2021 versus Week 1 of 2022.

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