Aaron Rodgers ‘loved’ what Jets did in 1st round of 2024 NFL Draft

No one should be happier with the Jets’ first-round pick than quarterback Aaron Rodgers.

New York traded back one spot to take Penn State offensive tackle Olu Fashanu in a move that gives the Jets a deep offensive line room. This comes a season after Rodgers tore his Achilles four plays into his first season with the team, thanks in part to poor blocking by the Jets’ lineman.

Rodgers told ESPN’s Pat McAfee on Thursday that he “loved” what the Jets did with their first-round pick. Not only did the team add a quality offensive lineman, but general manager Joe Douglas added two mid-round picks to the mix as well to give the Jets more draft capital either to take other players or move up throughout the draft. 

“It wasn’t necessarily top of the needs but I know they really loved Olu and I loved what Joe did — Moving back and getting a couple more picks,” Rodgers said. “Olu is a mauler and he had an incredible career at Penn State. He’s not going to need to jump in right away at tackle, for sure. We’ll see if we work him in at guard. I think he’s going to have a long career in the league. Much longer than I’m going to be in New Jersey. I’m excited for him.

“I think adding Olu to the mix to give us even more depth at offensive line is a great pick by Joe.”

The Jets now have a full stable of linemen at their disposal in 2024 between Fashanu and veteran tackles Morgan Moses and Tyron Smith — two huge, albeit aging, pickups in free agency. The Jets also signed Ravens guard John Simpson to flesh out the offensive line alongside guard and fellow former first-rounder Alijah Vera-Tucker and center Connor McGovern.

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Fashanu could play guard for Jets

Rodgers hinted at the idea that Fashanu could play guard in New York, but Douglas said Thursday night that the team expects their newest lineman to play left tackle behind Smith. Fashanu, meanwhile, said he was “truly blessed” to be able to play behind Smith and Moses and that Smith, and eight-time Pro Bowler and two-time All-Pro, “was the absolute standard” at his position.

Fashanu famously allowed just one sack in his near-700 pass-blocking snaps at Penn State with a 1.1% pressure rate, per ESPN.

“I feel like one of my best assets is consistency on the field, never taking any plays off, always giving my all,” Fashanu said, via SNY. “Great in pass protection and run blocking, but also a great locker room guy as well. I’m someone who I’m going to be the same person day in and day out. Come in and work my tail off. I’m going to compete, I’m going to compete within the program, because at the end of the day, by competing with everyone, not only are you getting yourself better, but you’re getting everyone around you better.”

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