Home | Articles | Film Room | Ikem Ekwonu’s versatility perfectly suits the New York Jets | Film Breakdown

Ikem Ekwonu’s versatility perfectly suits the New York Jets | Film Breakdown

Blewett's Blitz, Ikem Ekwonu
Blewett's Blitz, Ikem Ekwonu, New York Jets, 2022 NFL draft, Jet X Graphic, Getty Images

Ikem Ekwonu’s versatility is exactly what the New York Jets offensive line needs

Most, if not all, New York Jets fans are hoping to land an edge rusher at the top of the 2022 NFL draft. The top two names are obvious, in Kayvon Thibodeaux and Aidan Hutchinson.

At one point, nobody thought the Oregon stud could fall to No. 4, yet here we are. It’s extremely possible, whereas Hutchinson feels like a safe bet to be gone prior to the four-spot.

What does Joe Douglas do if both edge players are selected in the top three? This is the question.

The full Jet X member-only video is near the bottom of this page and can also be seen on the Blewett's Blitz homepage (if you're a paid member and logged in).

YouTube Clip and Podcast

Meet Ikem Ekwonu.

The NC State tackle is currently the No. 2 offensive lineman in the pool, behind Alabama’s Evan Neal. Yet, Ekwonu is probably the much better match for this New York Jets offensive line considering his versatility and aggression.

Ekwonu is an absolute bully of an offensive hog, something Douglas loves (see the Mekhi Becton pick in 2020). Better yet, Ekwonu possesses the skill set to play guard in the NFL—unlike Neal, which is much more of a question for the Bama stud.

Will Douglas complete the offensive line in drafting Ekwonu, if both edge rushers are gone? Does he fit at both guard and tackle? Is he worth the 4th overall pick?

Strengths and Weaknesses

Strengths

  • Power
  • Takes good angles to overtake blocks on combos
  • Ability to snatch and trap bull rushes/long arms
    bully mentality
  • Comes off of combo blocks with good timing
  • Active eyes in pass protection
  • Strong anchor and bridge
  • “Latch and screws” in pass pro
  • Plays with good extension
  • Uses overlap technique
  • Active drag hand (could play with more extension to it)
  • Gets hips around on zone blocks to get positional leverage
  • Picks up stunts well
  • Understands “lose to gain”
  • Tough
  • Effort
  • Moves with good balance on 2nd level
  • Doesn’t get over toes in the second level
  • Plays with good leverage in the run game
  • Attacks hip/ribs to move
  • Throws wrench when beat inside
  • Grip strength
  • Can play offensive tackle but is a great fit at guard
  • Doesn’t chase in zone blocks, disciplined to angles/assignment
  • Good vertical movement for size
  • Good cut blocker
  • Strong base and core
  • Doesn’t overcommit to blocks in pass pro, stays square, aware of other threats

Weaknesses

  • Over aggressiveness can hurt him
  • Can both leave feet during pass pro punch or have feet locked into turf
  • Oversets too often
  • Average lateral movement
  • Hands not “on guard” in pass protection
  • Feet can be slightly clunky/heavy
  • Needs to widen with outside punch instead of either opening or locking into ground
  • Almost always shoots two hands, locking hips out and needing to land hands instead of alternating punches
  • Hands carry low
  • Needs to reset his hands more consistently instead of reaching for contact
  • Could take bigger steps/jump to get into anchor quicker
  • Punch can land wide

Member-Only Film Breakdown (over an hour in length)


Jets X-Factor Membership
Sorry, the content stops here if you’re not a Jet X Member, not currently logged-in, or viewing from an outside source such as Google AMP or an RSS Feed where logged-in status is not possible.

Get Started with the button below to access this Jets X-Factor article and the best damn New York Jets content in the world for free (after becoming a member, search for this article near the bottom of the Membership Confirmation page):
Jets X-Factor, Get Started
Log In with the button below if you’re already a member:
Jets X-Factor, Log In
Connect with the button below if you’d like to create a free account first:
Jets X-Factor, Connect

Want More Jet X?

Subscribe to become a Jet X Member to unlock every piece of Jets X-Factor content (film breakdowns, analytics, Sabo with the Jets, etc.), get audio versions of each article, receive the ability to comment within our community, and experience an ad-free platform experience.

Download the free Jet X Mobile App to get customizable notifications directly to your iOS (App Store) or Android (Google Play) device.

Sign up for Jet X Daily, our daily newsletter that's delivered to your inbox every morning at 8:00 a.m. ET.

Add Jets X-Factor to your Google News feed and/or find us on Apple News to stay updated with the New York Jets.

Follow us on X (Formerly Twitter) @jetsxfactor for all the latest New York Jets news, Facebook for even more, Instagram for some of the top NY Jets images, and YouTube for original Jets X-Factor videos.

Related Articles

About the Author

More From Author

Comments

3 Comments
Newest
Oldest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments