The Seattle Seahawks drafted a pair of offensive linemen in the 2022 NFL Draft, taking Charles Cross and Abraham Lucas with two of the team’s earlier picks. That made it easier to justify not paying one of the team’s reigning Pro Bowlers, who is leaving for the AFC.
With offensive tackle Mekhi Becton suffering a potentially season-ending knee injury, the New York Jets have officially signed former Seahawks Pro Bowl offensive tackle Duane Brown, according to ESPN NFL insider Adam Schefter.
Schefter also added that the deal is for two seasons. Brown will have a chance at immediately competing for a starting job on the Jets offensive line, but he’ll be going against another former Seahawks offensive tackle George Fant for that starting gig.
Brown had been listed as one of the best remaining free agents still available, but that list got a little bit shorter with the Jets bringing in the 36-year-old tackle.
Brown’s Football Career
Although he’s nearing the end of his football career, Brown has been one of the most consistent offensive tackles over the last two decades, going all the way back to his college playing days.
Coming out of Hermitage High School in Richmond, Virginia, Brown was actually a 3-star tight end with offers to play for Maryland, Virginia Tech and Virginia. He ultimately decided to play for the Hokies, where he switched to offensive tackle halfway through his time with head coach Frank Beamer.
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Brown quickly caught on to his new position, and after a strong senior season he was taken by the Houston Texans in the first round of the 2008 NFL draft. While the Texans struggled to be a consistent contender, Brown had a strong nine and a half seasons with the franchise. He left Houston with a first-team All-Pro selection, a second-team All-Pro selection, and three Pro Bowl appearances.
The Texans eventually traded Brown to the Seahawks halfway through the 2017 season. He’s made another two Pro Bowl selections, including one just last season in 2021. What has stood out throughout Brown’s career has been his availability, playing in 203 games since 2008.
Approaching his 37th birthday, it’s unclear how much more football Brown will be able to play. However, he has a real chance at being a starter once again in 2022 for the Jets.
Who Will Start at Offensive Tackle for Seattle?
The Seahawks won’t have their reigning Pro Bowler at left tackle anymore, but after a strong 2022 NFL draft, the team’s offensive line should be in pretty good shape.
Charles Cross was the team’s first draft pick this year, going ninth overall. A former 5-star recruit, Cross was a stud at left tackle for the Mississippi State Bulldogs. With 34.5-inch arms and great foot quickness, Cross is tremendously talented and shouldn’t have a problem protecting the blind side of whoever is playing under center.
In-state draft pick Abraham Lucas will be competing for the starting right tackle job as well. He primarily played on the right side for the Washington State Cougars in college, and possesses a strong football IQ to handle twists and stunts with the technique to avoid getting beat.
The Seahawks made an effort to get younger on the offensive line this offseason, and fans will be keeping a close eye on the trenches to see if that plan works out in 2022 and beyond.