This is one in a series of articles that will also appear in the New York Jets 2022 Yearbook, which will be published later this summer.
Going into the offseason, general manager Joe Douglas knew the Jets needed a tight end or two to give QB Zach Wilson more options on offense. Douglas got to work and acquired three — C.J. Uzomah and Tyler Conklin in unrestricted free agency and Jeremy Ruckert in the third round of the NFL Draft.
Uzomah joins the Green & White after a career year with the Bengals, the AFC representative in Super Bowl LVI. He recorded 49 receptions, 493 yards and five touchdowns in 2021 and brings a championship pedigree to the Jets.
“I can see what the coaches are trying to do here, and I can see the young players that we have that are eager and fighting their butts off week in and week out,” Uzomah said. “There is a lot of talent and I feel like we have something special that we’re going to be able to achieve.”
Conklin came from the Vikings after a breakout season with 61 receptions, 593 yards and three touchdowns.
“The vision they have for this team and how I fit into that, I think it was the perfect fit,” Conklin said. “For this system, you need tight ends, you need two tight ends for sure, and I think [CJ and I] complement each other really well on and off the field.”
With the 111th overall pick in the draft, Douglas selected Jeremy Ruckert, a Long Island native and lifelong Jets fan. The Ohio State product is known for his blocking, but he had his best receiving year as a senior with 26 receptions, 309 yards and three TDs.
“I feel like there’s such a good versatility between the whole group,” head coach Robert Saleh said. “C.J. obviously more in-line, Conklin more of a third-down, move tight end, and adding Ruckert, he’s kind of in between the two. They’re easy outlets, get vertical, lay the hammer down when people are trying to tackle.”
The Jets’ new kids on the block join a TE room that also has fourth-year player Trevon Wesco, Kenny Yeboah and converted WR Lawrence Cager.