New York Jets release unofficial depth chart ahead of 2021 season
The New York Jets have released an unofficial depth chart ahead of their 2021 season opener against the Carolina Panthers. Keep an emphasis on the word “unofficial” – this is in no way an ironclad indication of the Jets’ actual depth chart.
- 1. Zach Wilson
- 2. Mike White
No surprises here. Zach Wilson joins Mac Jones and Trevor Lawrence as one of three rookie quarterbacks who get the starting nod to begin the 2021 season.
- 1. Tevin Coleman
- 2. Ty Johnson
- 3. Michael Carter
- 4. La’Mical Perine
- 5. Josh Adams
Tevin Coleman at number one is somewhat of a surprise after Ty Johnson and Michael Carter carried the workload in the preseason (though Coleman only played in one game).
La’Mical Perine and Josh Adams at fourth and fifth, respectively, is no surprise. Adams, who was signed to the Jets’ active roster on Monday, may be the No. 4 option in Week 1 if Perine does not recover from his foot injury in time to suit up.
- X receiver 1. Corey Davis
- Z receiver 1. Elijah Moore
- Slot receiver 1. Keelan Cole
- X receiver 2. Denzel Mims
- Z receiver 2. Jeff Smith
- Slot receiver 2. Braxton Berrios
X, Z, and slot designations are not listed on the official team release and are presumed based on player utilization.
The starting duo is no surprise. Corey Davis projects as the team’s primary X receiver (on the line of scrimmage, opposite the tight end) while Elijah Moore projects as the team’s primary Z receiver (off the line of scrimmage, on the tight end’s side), but those roles are highly interchangeable.
Denzel Mims backs up Davis while Jeff Smith backs up Moore.
Jamison Crowder’s current placement on the reserve/COVID-19 list leaves Keelan Cole as the primary slot receiver. Braxton Berrios backs him up.
- LT 1. Mekhi Becton
- LG 1. Alijah Vera-Tucker
- C 1. Connor McGovern
- RG 1. Greg Van Roten
- RT 1 (undecided). Morgan Moses/George Fant
- LT 2. Chuma Edoga
- LG 2. Dan Feeney
- C 2. Dan Feeney
- RG 2. Dan Feeney
Right tackle is one of two positions on the depth chart in which the Jets did not list a starter. Robert Saleh is declining to announce the winner of the competition between Morgan Moses and George Fant.
Dan Feeney is the only backup interior offensive lineman on the roster and will be the next man up if any of the starting three players on the interior go down.
Chuma Edoga is set to back up Mekhi Becton at left tackle.
- 1. Trevon Wesco
Trevon Wesco is listed as the only fullback on the roster. He should see plenty of playing time at the position after the Jets ran 21 personnel (1 RB, 1 FB) on 39% of their snaps with the first-team offense in the preseason.
- 1. Tyler Kroft
- 2. Ryan Griffin
- 3. Daniel Brown
- 4. Trevon Wesco
Tyler Kroft is the top gun at tight end while Ryan Griffin and Daniel Brown follow him after Chris Herndon’s exit.
Griffin should be a beneficiary of the snaps vacated by Herndon, as the Jets are poised to run a lot of 12 personnel (2 tight ends). They used it on 27% of their plays with the first-team offense in the preseason, a number that would have ranked ninth-highest in the NFL last season.
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- DE 1. John Franklin-Myers
- DT 1. Quinnen Williams
- DT 1. Foley Fatukasi
- DE 1. Bryce Huff
- DE 2. Shaq Lawson
- DT 2. Sheldon Rankins
- DT 2. Nathan Shepherd
- DE 2. Tim Ward
- DT 3. Jonathan Marshall
There are some interesting takeaways here (let’s remember that this is unofficial, though).
Shaq Lawson is not listed with the first-team defense, as John Franklin-Myers and Bryce Huff are listed over him as the two starting defensive ends. Presumably, Franklin-Myers is the right-side defensive end while Huff is the left-side defensive end. Lawson (a predominantly right-side rusher) is listed behind Franklin-Myers while Tim Ward is listed behind Huff.
Foley Fatukasi gets the nod as a first-team defensive tackle over Sheldon Rankins, who is listed behind Quinnen Williams. This makes it seem that the Jets will value Fatukasi’s run defense over Rankins’ pass-rushing when they send out their base 4-3 defense on early downs.
- LB1. C.J. Mosley
- LB1. Jamien Sherwood
- LB1. Hamsah Nasirildeen
- LB2. Blake Cashman
- LB2. Quincy Williams
C.J. Mosley, Jamien Sherwood, and Hamsah Nasirildeen appear to be the starting linebackers in a base look.
However, that does not mean the Jets will have three linebackers on the field for the majority of the game. Two linebackers will likely play on every down while the third linebacker will only hit the field for around one-third (33%) of the snaps on average. Mosley and Sherwood are set to be the every-down starters.
Blake Cashman and Quincy Williams are the backups. Cashman is listed as the No. 2 behind both Mosley and Sherwood while Williams is listed behind Nasirildeen, affirming that Cashman is the clear fourth option (as you would expect).
Related Article: Where does a healthy C.J. Mosley rank among NFL linebackers?
- Outside CB 1. Bryce Hall
- Outside CB 1. Isaiah Dunn/Brandin Echols/Jason Pinnock
- Outside CB 2. Justin Hardee
- Nickel CB 1. Javelin Guidry
- Nickel CB 2. Michael Carter II
Cornerback is the second position where the Jets have not revealed a starter. Bryce Hall will start on one side, but his partner in crime following Bless Austin’s release remains a mystery. Three rookies – Isaiah Dunn, Brandin Echols, and Jason Pinnock – are in the mix.
Robert Saleh has not officially declared a winner for the Jets’ nickel cornerback competition, but this depth chart has Javelin Guidry listed as the starter and Michael Carter II listed as the backup.
- S 1. Marcus Maye
- S 1. Lamarcus Joyner
- S 2. Sharrod Neasman
- S 2. Sheldrick Redwine
Nothing shocking here. Sharrod Neasman is listed behind presumed strong safety Marcus Maye while Sheldrick Redwine is listed behind presumed free safety Lamarcus Joyner.
- K. Matt Ammendola
- P. Braden Mann
- H. Braden Mann
- LS. Thomas Hennessy
- PR 1. Braxton Berrios
- KR 1. Braxton Berrios
- PR 2. Keelan Cole
- KR 2. Keelan Cole
- PR 3. Michael Carter
- KR 3. Michael Carter
Braxton Berrios appears on track to man both kick return roles. Keelan Cole is his backup in both roles while Michael Carter is the third-string returner.
Jamison Crowder is on the reserve/COVID-19 list. Because he is vaccinated, he can return in time for Sunday’s game and the Jets are hopeful that he will be available. Once Crowder is asymptomatic for 48 hours, he must have two negative tests 24 hours apart to become eligible for activation.
When Crowder returns, the Jets will have to clear a roster spot for him.
Safety Ashtyn Davis, linebacker Jarrad Davis, and tackle Conor McDermott each made the Jets’ initial 53-man roster before being placed on injured reserve, which means the Jets plan for them to return at some point. They are eligible to return after missing three games.