New York Jets eye Duane Brown as potential replacement for Mekhi Becton following 2nd knee injury

Duane Brown- Jets offensive line
Wikimedia Commons

The New York Jets got some disappointing news when Mekhi Becton, the team’s first-round pick in the 2020 NFL Draft, left practice because of a knee injury. 

According to reports, the tackle suffered a serious knee injury, and speculation has already begun about his 2022 season potentially being over. 

Becton had been penciled in as the team’s right tackle this season with George Fant manning the all-important, left tackle spot. 

Still, an injury to even one offensive lineman can curtail the entire unit, and general manager Joe Douglas and his front office need to find an appropriate replacement for their young talent. 

It appears that Douglas is already ahead of the curve. 

Jets eye Duane Brown

On WFAN This Morning with Boomer Esiason and Gregg Giannotti, the general manager spoke on the fact that the “wheels are in motion” for a potential free agent signing to replace Becton. 

All eyes have pointed to Duane Brown as the needed tackle to fill in Becton’s shoes. Brown had reportedly visited the Jets two days before New York’s right tackle got hurt. 

Brown was a first-round pick by the Houston Texans in 2008. A five-time pro-bowler, and first-team all-pro in 2012, the former Virginia Tech star has been a model of consistency over his career. He has been with the Seattle Seahawks as the team’s best offensive lineman for the last five seasons: making a pro-bowl just last year. 

Brown has had a lot of success as a left tackle, but a signing could mean a potential position change as the Jets have been extremely steadfast that Fant would remain the left tackle. 

There are complications to a potential Brown deal though. The former pro-bowler was arrested in July for allegedly possessing a concealed weapon. The gun was reportedly not loaded at the time of his arrest. 

It is unknown at this time if Brown will receive any discipline from the league following his arrest. 

The left tackle also has a strong list of suitors outside of just the Jets. The Bears and even Seahawks could all conceivably be in the market for a player like Duane Brown, which only complicates further contract talks with the New York Jets. 

Even if Brown were to choose to go elsewhere, there are still several different options for the Jets to replace Becton. Jason Peters, a future Hall-of-Fame tackle is reportedly not ready to retire just yet. There are other trade partners as well including Andre Dillard and the Philadelphia Eagles. 

It appears that Brown is still the main target though for Douglas and New York. While the feeling is reportedly “mutual” on Brown’s side, the Jets would then need to decide if they move Fant back to right tackle or pencil in the 36-year-old on the right side. While seemingly easy, Brown would need to learn an entirely new position from a different viewing point than he is used to. 

There are different techniques for left and right tackles. Tasking Brown with figuring that out is no easy task. 

It’s important to have a complete offensive line for a young quarterback like Zach Wilson. The development of a young signal-caller is one of the most important pieces to solving the rebuilding puzzle in New York. 

That means any hole on the offensive line must be filled with competent and successful talent. A veteran presence also wouldn’t hurt, as it would give a young star much-needed veteran help. 

Duane Brown fits that description.

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