There has been a huge absence of the Jets in OTA’s practice field – literally.
Left tackle Mekhi Becton has not trained because he is dealing with a foot injury, coach Robert Saleh revealed on Friday. That The NFL Network reported the damage is plantar fasciitis.
This is the latest in a series of injuries to the 6-foot-7 Becton. He missed two full games and a large amount of two others with injuries as a rookie in 2020. Becton’s weight could be a contributing cause of the injuries. He is listed at 364 pounds, but sources said he played with a higher weight last year and the team had to discipline him over his weight.
Saleh said the foot began to bother Becton after his first OTA exercise, so the jets asked him to stay away. Becton was at the training ground on Friday, but just as a spectator.
“When you talk about Becton, he is dealing with a foot [injury], ”Said Saleh. “There is nothing to operate on. It really is not that big. As you all know, he is a very big man, so we have asked him to stay away, so we keep him inside during training. But he has been in meetings. He has trained. ”
Saleh said all young players, not just Becton, should learn to take care of their bodies.
“It’s part of the learning progression of young men,” Saleh said. “They have to learn to take care of their bodies. They must learn to eat right, exercise right, rest right, [regenerate] right, stay hydrated and all the different things that lead to longevity in this league. Mekhi is one of them. He’s a young man. He is a very talented young man. He is a very big young man. He learns every day what it takes to be a professional and how to take the next step. We have a lot of confidence in him. He’s doing all the right things right now. We are happy to have him at training camp and work with him. ”
The Jets drafted Becton with overall pick No. 11 in 2020. He immediately started making highlight blocks when he threw defensive linemen aside. But he struggled to stay on the field. A shoulder injury ruled him out early in the season for two games. He went out of another game as he had trouble breathing. Durability can be an issue for a player, which the Jets hope can be a cornerstone for them.
Becton’s size is a mystery to the jets. They do not want him to lose any strength, but they also need to get him in a weight where he can stay healthy and maintain his speed.
“We want these guys to be as big and as strong as possible without losing their speed,” Saleh said last month. “You could look at it from ‘hey, go as easy as you can’, but we want them to push the envelope to be heavy. At the same time, there is this threshold. We do not want him to be so easy where he loses all the power he has, but at the same time we do not want him to be too heavy – a happy medium. He is such a huge athlete and he has such mobility for his size. We work with him. We find his weight. We get to see what he can and cannot do, and as a professional football player and a man. He finds out what he can and cannot do based on his weight. ”