Home Sports Greg Van Roten a key piece of Jets’ offensive line makeover

Greg Van Roten a key piece of Jets’ offensive line makeover

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As the Jets get close to training camp, I am examining the roster and giving you my top 25 players. Each weekday, we will reveal another person on the list, leading right into camp. I am not including rookies on this list because I do not feel it is possible to fully evaluate them before they play a game.

No. 20: Greg Van Roten

Last year’s ranking: Unranked (not on team)

Position: RG

Age on Opening Day: 30

How acquired: Signed a three-year, $10.5 million contract as an unrestricted free agent on April 2.

Years left on contract: 3

2020 Salary Cap figure: $3.3 million

Looking back at 2019

Van Roten started 11 games for the Panthers last year at left guard, missing the final five with a dislocated toe.

He had a good year as a pass blocker, giving up just one sack and allowing only 17 pressures, four of those coming Week 1 against Aaron Donald and the Rams (the sack also came in that matchup). He did not allow another in his next 10 games.

Van Roten is not as strong of a run blocker, but still did well opening holes for Chrisitian McCaffrey. He only had one accepted penalty last year.

PFF graded him as the 25th best guard out of 82.

Greg Van Roten
Greg Van RotenGetty Images

Outlook for 2020

Van Roten is part of the Jets’ offensive line makeover. General manager Joe Douglas set out to fix the line after a dismal 2019 when they allowed 52 sacks and finished 31st in rushing offense.

The 6-foot-3, 305-pound Van Roten played left guard for the Panthers but probably will shift to the right side with New York. He is expected to battle incumbent Brian Winters for the starting job. Van Roten gets an edge because of logic — the Jets would not have signed him unless they felt he was an upgrade over Winters.

He is known as a smart and determined player. He made it as an undrafted free agent out of Pennsylvania in 2012.

While Van Roten is 30 years old, he does not have a lot of tread on the tires. He did not become an NFL starter until 2018 in Carolina.

Van Roten has been durable in his career, rarely missing time to injury until last year’s dislocated toe.

He figures to be a starter at right guard this year unless Winters blows him away in training camp. Douglas is counting on the Rockville Centre native to be part of an improved line.

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