The Jets have the perfect personnel to exploit these particular individuals on their 2020 schedule.
Week 6: Connor McGovern and Greg Van Roten vs. Chargers DT Jerry Tillery and Chargers DL
Los Angeles has a very talented defense, possessing a bunch of stars on the edge (Joey Bosa, Melvin Ingram) and in the secondary (Casey Hayward, Chris Harris, Derwin James, Desmond King), but the interior defensive line is a major question mark. I ranked the Chargers’ IDL as the league’s worst in 2019.
With a combined total of 41 pressures over 880 pass-rush snaps, Los Angeles’ IDL posted a pressure rate of 4.7% that ranked second-worst of all 32 units in the league. For reference, the league average pressure rate at IDL was 7.8% in 2019.
Jerry Tillery, the Chargers’ first-round pick in 2019 (28th overall), had a dead-silent rookie season. Over 15 games, he recorded just 10 pressures (0.7 per game) on 177 rush snaps (5.6% rate).
Tillery creates no pressure whatsoever in this one-on-one matchup, giving Ryan Tannehill a cushy pocket and clear throwing lane for a 24-yard strike to Jonnu Smith.
The interior pass protection of McGovern and Van Roten figures to be the most consistent aspect of the Jets offensive line in 2020. Last year, McGovern posted a Pro Football Focus pass blocking grade of 82.5 that ranked at the 87th percentile among centers, while Van Roten’s pass blocking grade of 74.3 placed at the 76th percentile among guards.
In two games against the Chargers last year, McGovern allowed zero sacks, zero hits, and one hurry.
Expect the interior pressure on Sam Darnold to be kept to a minimum when the Jets fly out to L.A. in Week 6. The real challenge in that game will be the battle on the edges – Mekhi Becton and George Fant versus Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram.
Our next mismatch involves another duo on the Jets offense against a weak facet from a defense out west.