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Jets’ Mekhi Becton ‘likely’ done for the season after knee injury, coach Robert Saleh says


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New York Jets offensive lineman Mekhi Becton will “more than likely” miss the entire 2022 season after suffering a significant knee injury during training camp on Monday, head coach Robert Saleh revealed Tuesday.

Saleh said the 2020 first-round pick will be going for a second opinion on Wednesday to assess the injury to his right knee. According to ESPN, he suffered a fractured kneecap.

Mekhi Becton of the New York Jets is helped off the field after being injured during the Panthers game at Bank of America Stadium on Sept. 12, 2021, in Charlotte, North Carolina.
(Mike Eat/Getty Images)

“Still doesn’t look good,” Saleh told reporters. “It’s probably the inevitable,” he said, later clarifying that his season was “more than likely” over.

JETS OFFENSIVE TACKLE MEKHI BECTON GOES DOWN AFTER APPEARING TO REINJURE RIGHT KNEE

The 6-foot-7 lineman, who was rumored to have hit 400 pounds last season, was run-blocking at right tackle on the second play of team drills when he went down on the grass and immediately grabbed at his knee.

Becton was down for a few moments before trying to get up and needed assistance from trainers to walk off the field.

Mekhi Becton suffered a dislocated right kneecap and cartilage damage in the opening game last year against the Panthers, Sept.  12, 2021, in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Mekhi Becton suffered a dislocated right kneecap and cartilage damage in the opening game last year against the Panthers, Sept. 12, 2021, in Charlotte, North Carolina.
(Photo by Mike Comer/Getty Images)

Saleh, anticipating the media and fan storm that would soon follow, defended Becton and his work ethic.

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“You worry about all of them. These are young men and I think sometimes with social media in this world, we dehumanize these athletes – in the worst way imaginable. Mekhi has walked in this building and he has taken every single punch you can get from every which way and he shows up and he works his tail off and he grinds every single day,” he said.

“He’s fighting for his family, for himself, for his teammates, for this organization, for this fan base and he’s doing everything, and then everyone wants to drop him like a wet rag. That ain’t the case. We love Mekhi. We appreciate everything he’s done. His ride is not over. His story is not over.”

Becton responded on social media, thanking Saleh for his words.

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“I appreciate you more than you know coach!! Love you coach!!! ITS NOT OVER!!!,” he said in a tweet.

New York Jets offensive tackle Mekhi Becton is helped during the Panthers game on Sept.  12, 2021, in Charlotte, North Carolina.

New York Jets offensive tackle Mekhi Becton is helped during the Panthers game on Sept. 12, 2021, in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Becton entered his first two NFL seasons as the starter on the left side, but suffered a dislocated right kneecap and cartilage damage in the opening game last year at Carolina. He missed the rest of the season and was replaced by George Fant, who slid over from right tackle and played well in Becton’s place.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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