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Jets 2017 Roster Breakdown: Can Wesley Johnson Handle the Starting Center Job?

Baltimore Ravens v New York Jets Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images

Our countdown of the 2017 Jets roster moves on to Wesley Johnson.

Name: Wesley Johnson

Number: 76

Year with Jets: 4th

Projected Role: Probable starting center

His 2016: Nick Mangold’s injury woes led to eight starts for Johnson. A stellar performance in a December win over the 49ers drew a lot of acclaim. The rest of his season was up and down, however. Johnson seemed to have problems at times deciphering complex blitzes and picking up the right man. Whatever Johnson showed the Jets was enough for them to offer him the second round tender as a restricted free agent.

2017 will be a success if: Johnson develops into a quality starting center. Because the Jets gave Johnson that second round tender, he is right in the middle of the pack for salary at the center position. It’s a bold commitment to a guy who has never been an opening day starter and has been inconsistent for the stretches where he has been in the lineup. The Jets seem to have quite a bit of faith in their offensive line coach to develop Johnson (and other young linemen). With that in mind, there was definite improvement in Johnson’s game between 2015 and 2016. It also is worth noting none of Johnson’s $2.7 million is guaranteed so in theory the Jets could let him go and save that money if he is outplayed by somebody in training camp.

Odds of making the roster: Probable (75-99%)