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NY Jets free agent profile: Saints G James Hurst

James Hurst
James Hurst

The New York Jets could look to fill the guard position with a solid veteran

The New York Jets will likely need at least one new starting guard this offseason, and possibly two depending on where Alijah Vera-Tucker plays. Considering the Jets also need at least one starting tackle, they probably won’t be able to spend a fortune on every single hole in their starting offensive line. They’ll need to find value at a spot or two.

Luckily for New York, the free-agent guard market boasts a large collection of veteran guards who can be had on affordable deals while also offering starter-quality production. One of the most intriguing players in this boat is James Hurst of the New Orleans Saints.

Jets free agent profiles:

Basic info

  • Age: 32.1
  • Height: 6-foot-5
  • Weight: 310 pounds
  • College: North Carolina
  • Experience: 10 years (Signed by Ravens as UDFA in 2014)
  • Teams: Ravens (2014-19), Saints (2020-present)
  • Previous contract: 3 years, $9M, $5M guaranteed (Signed with Saints in 2021)

Measurables

  • Data from 2014 Combine (via Mockdraftable)
  • Percentiles among all-time offensive tackle prospects

Note that Hurst is currently listed as 14 pounds heavier than he was at the time of the 2014 Combine.

James-Hurst-NY-Jets-Free-Agent

 

  • Height: 6-foot-5 (30th percentile)
  • Weight: 296 pounds (3rd)
  • Arm length: 33.75in (33rd)
  • Hand size: 10.125n (58th)

Hurst tested at his North Carolina pro day (percentile rankings are unavailable):

  • 40-yard dash: 5.59s
  • 10-yard split: 1.93s
  • Vertical jump: 22n
  • 20-yard shuttle: 4.73s
  • Bench press: 20 reps

While Hurst did not participate in every drill, he performed poorly in the drills he did partake in, resulting in a Relative Athletic Score (RAS) of 0.48/10.

Role

After serving as a backup for the majority of his first seven NFL seasons, Hurst established himself as a vital Swiss Army knife for the Saints’ starting lineup in recent years. Hurst started 46 games for New Orleans across the past three seasons, making starts at four different positions.

Hurst was a starter in all 15 games he played for the Saints in 2023. He was their opening-week starting left guard and made 12 starts at that position, but he also made two starts at right guard and one start at left tackle.

Hurst was also a starter for New Orleans in all 16 games he played in 2022. He started 15 games at left tackle and one game at left guard.

In 2021, Hurst started 15 of his 17 games, making 10 starts at left tackle, three at right tackle, and two at left guard.

For his career, Hurst has played 2,920 snaps at left tackle, 2,360 at left guard, 825 at right tackle, and 112 at right guard. He’s also played 212 snaps as a sixth offensive lineman.

2023 performance

Elite pass-blocking numbers

Serving as a full-time starting guard for the first time since his 2017 season in Baltimore, Hurst put up spectacular numbers as a pass blocker in 2023.

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dudizt
dudizt
4 months ago

See ya Laken

Jets71
Jets71
4 months ago

Given your breakdown this guy seems like a “must get.” He can be your starting LG and IF…(for the Jets the past few years more like when) he can sub in at LT. Ideally, they stay healthy but someone with his pass blocking consistency in two positions on the left side is about as good at they can do in FA. Signing Hurst allows them to draft a LT, or take a chance on signing a LT like Tyron Smith, knowing their LT won’t completely go in the dumpster if there is an injury. Signing Hurst would be good insurance.

Schweitzer can play both G positions, as can AVT. I know we don’t want to shuffle but, as we know do need to be prepared for the worst. Especially since regardless of who plays LT this season there will be question marks.

Last edited 4 months ago by Jets71
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