Mekhi Becton, NY Jets, Instagram, Workout
Mekhi Becton, New York Jets, Getty Images

Mekhi Becton looks to be in good shape as he sharpens footwork at left tackle in new workout video

New York Jets offensive tackle Mekhi Becton continues to get his offseason work in with trainer and offensive line guru Duke Manyweather in Dallas, Texas. The Jets began their voluntary offseason workout program at the team facility in New Jersey on April 18 but Becton is one of the players who chose to continue working on their own.

Becton seems to be coming along nicely. In a video posted to Manyweather’s Instagram story on May 5, Becton appears slim as he works on dropping into pass-sets from a left tackle alignment.

Becton is preparing to compete with George Fant for the team’s starting left tackle role. Head coach Robert Saleh declared the competition in early February.

Fant took Becton’s place on the blindside after Becton suffered a season-ending injury in Week 1 of the 2021 season, and he went on to enjoy a fantastic season in pass protection. Giving up just 18 pressures over 594 pass-blocking snaps, Fant yielded a pressure rate of 3.03%, the third-best rate among all left tackles in the NFL.

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Becton is seeking to build off a promising rookie season in which he showed the potential to become an elite tackle. Over the final seven weeks of 2020, Becton earned the ninth-best pass-blocking grade and the 10th-best run-blocking grade among qualified left tackles at Pro Football Focus. He was just 21 years old at the time.

Prior to the 2022 NFL draft, rumors circulated claiming that the Jets could select Becton’s future replacement. The weekend’s outcome quelled those rumblings.

With the fourth overall pick, the Jets had a chance to draft either of the top two offensive tackle prospects in the class – NC State’s Ikem Ekwonu or Alabama’s Evan Neal – but they passed on both players in favor of Cincinnati cornerback Sauce Gardner. The Jets wound up not selecting an offensive tackle until they took Louisiana’s Max Mitchell in round four, making it clear that Becton is an integral part of the team’s plans going forward.

Becton and Fant’s primary backups are Mitchell, Conor McDermott, and Chuma Edoga; not an inspiring group. The lack of depth all but ensures that Becton and Fant will be the team’s Week 1 starting tackles (health permitting). The only question that’s left to answer is who will start on which side.

Speaking after the draft about Becton’s absence from the facility, Saleh expressed that he and the team would prefer for Becton to be in Florham Park but that they are staying in touch with him and are pleased with the work he is doing.

“I mean, you want all your guys to be here,” Saleh said. “It’s voluntary. But I know he’s working his tail off in Dallas and we have tabs on him. We know exactly what he’s doing and we know where he is within his rehab.”

Saleh then jokingly looked at the camera and said, “We’d love you back here, buddy! Come on. We’ll take care of you.”

The earliest we could see Becton in Jersey is when the Jets begin OTAs on May 23 (which run through June 10). However, those are voluntary. New York’s first mandatory event for veteran players is the three-day veteran minicamp from June 14-16.

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Michael Nania is one of the best analytical New York Jets minds in the world, combining his statistical expertise with game film to add proper context to the data. Nania scrapes every corner, ensuring you know all there is to know about everyone from the QB to the long snapper. Nania's Numbers, Nania's QB Grades, and Nania's All-22 give fans a deeper and more well-rounded dive into the Jets than anyone else can offer. Email: michael.nania[at]jetsxfactor.com - Twitter: @Michael_Nania

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Azuma76
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Azuma76

Like I said before the draft, no need to get another OL ehen you got them already. I think Becton goes back to the left side and returns to his rookie form but better! Fant can go anywhere, the main thing is getting the depth pieces right and strong so if a starter goes down they can come in and pick up where they left off. Never lost faith in Becton and many people and jets fans alike need to keep that in mind when you mess with a players psyche, it goes along way.

Peter Buell
Member
Peter Buell

Going into this offseason I expected step 1 of the final two years of the rebuild. I still feel we need a few spots upgraded not to mention the young guys getting experience. After JD did a really intelligent job in free agency addressing many needs I felt we were ahead of schedule. Then nailing the draft, I think this team is within a few players of a playoff spot. The Jets have a very difficult schedule this year, so anything close to 500 will be beyond my expectations. 2023 is the season I expect the team to start a… Read more »

Barney Miller
Member
Barney Miller

Man, the draft was making me feel optimistic, but since Jet X has moved me from being a casual football fan to a semi-knowledgeable fan, I now know how important the blind side tackle (usually left) is to both the QB and the team. So honestly I was still worried about the O-Line long term and even short term. But seeing Big Ticket in shape and moving well gives me even more optimism! (Which is scary for us Jet fans). Here’s my prediction for the season. 9-8. Battling for a wildcard spot at the end of the season. (But I’ll… Read more »

Peter Buell
Member
Peter Buell

Barney, I’m still juiced over the draft. I badly wanted Nakobe Dean and when they traded with the Giants his was the name I expected to hear. I didn’t know till later both he and Ojabo were battling injuries. Breece Hall makes alot of sense despite how good Carter looked last year (4TH ROUNDER) hopefully keeping both healthy and fresh. I assume they don’t want to add too many youngsters into the scheme at once but if (speaking as a pumped up fan) Seattle would have traded #s 40 and 41 for our 2023 1st rounder, I would have done… Read more »

Barney Miller
Member
Barney Miller

I feel you. Carter was 4th round? I thought he was 2nd or 3rd. If so, he’s already beaten expectations. But what us Jet fans have to do is manage our expectations. I don’t think we make the playoffs this year, but even with only four wins they were fun to watch last year. Beating the Titans. Almost beating the bucs. That amazing Mike White game against the Bengals! Just watching the couple of locker room win videos tells me that JD & Saleh are building a real community here. And Mike LaFluer had some crazy plays! With all these… Read more »

Peter Buell
Member
Peter Buell

I feel the same. Haven’t been this juiced for a Jets team in ages…Not just the immediate but I see good things long term.
And yes, Carter was 4th round at #107. What a steal if he keeps it up which I expect

Jonathan Richter
Member
Jonathan Richter

Doesn’t look a pound over 330.

DHB
Member
DHB

That’s pretty encouraging. Looks like he has the lithe agility of a mountain cat.