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Ex-Jets Scout Not Sold On Laken Tomlinson Signing

This former Jets scout isn't convinced that signing Laken Tomlinson was a home run for New York.

When the biggest money signing for a 4-13 team in free agency is a guard, it raises questions. 

On March 14, the Jets, who have won a grand total of 13 games in the three seasons under general manager Joe Douglas, inked San Francisco guard Laken Tomlinson to a three-year, $40 million dollar contract. 

The main question does not so much revolve around Tomlinson, as much as it revolves the decision of the team. 

While platforms such as the USA Today’s Touchdown Wire and The Sporting News gave this signing by the Jets the grade of an “A,” I am not in this camp. 

I thought the move was average at best for a team trying to climb out of the basement of their division. I do not see the acquisition doing much of anything to move the 4-12 meter. 


  1. New York needed to allocate their cap money on surrounding quarterback Zach Wilson with offensive playmakers who fit his specific strengths and weaknesses.
  2. The Jets, who had the No. 30 ranked pass defense and finished at No. 25 in average sacks-per-game (1.9) last season had a lot bigger fish to fry with their money. 
  3. The Jets did not need to allocate this kind of money for a guard who grades out better as a run blocker than pass protector. 

The Rams’ interior defensive line spent much of the NFC Championship Game driving Tomlinson back into Jimmy Garoppolo’s face. 

Tomlinson showed in all three games studied, he is susceptible to giving up pressure in the gaps he is responsible for. 

Not exactly the type of guard Wilson needed, who already has a problem holding the ball too long. 

Not exactly the type of guard needed for a team who gave up the fourth-most sacks in the league last season (53). 

Dallas and Cincinnati were able to create a good amount of pressure on game film against Tomlinson in the passing game as well. 

Tomlinson was a former first-round selection by Detroit out of Duke in 2015. He was then traded to San Francisco in 2017 for a fifth-round pick. Tomlinson has only missed one start since. The 2022 Pro Bowl Alternates’ durability does stand out as does his effort. 

Tomlinson just has limitations he works his hardest to overcome, but they keep showing up.

49ers guard Laken Tomlinson celebrates win
49ers guard Laken Tomlinson warming up before game
49ers guard Laken Tomlinson smiles after win


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