New York Jets general manager Joe Douglas at the NFL...

New York Jets general manager Joe Douglas at the NFL football scouting combine in Indianapolis on Wednesday. Credit: AP/Michael Conroy

INDIANAPOLIS — Joe Douglas has had plenty of experience building and rebuilding the Jets’ offensive line. It’s up to the general manager to rebuild it again — and this time he has to get it right.

Fixing the offensive line is the No. 1 thing on Douglas’ to-do list this offseason, just ahead of adding more playmakers to the wide receiver room and finding a proven backup quarterback.

Everything about the 2024 Jets season starts with Aaron Rodgers having enough protection up front to stay healthy. His first season as a Jet lasted only four snaps. Rodgers tore his left Achilles tendon on a sack by Buffalo’s Leonard Floyd, who got past left tackle Duane Brown.

It was the first of 64 sacks the Jets allowed — fourth-most in the league — and the beginning of the end of their season. Their Week 1 line played only two games together. Injuries mounted, leading to 13 different starting offensive line combinations and an overhaul that’s already underway.

Left guard Laken Tomlinson, the Jets’ only offensive lineman to play every game, will be released to open up $8.14 million in cap space. Brown and tackle Mekhi Becton likely won’t return. The only starters from last year under contract are guard-tackle Alijah Vera-Tucker and center-guard Joe Tippmann.

Douglas has to find three starters. It’s similar to his first full offseason with the Jets in 2020, when he signed Connor McGovern, Greg Van Roten and George Fant and drafted Becton.

Douglas believes the Jets are “in a really good situation” on the line because of Vera-Tucker’s flexibility, but he has been healthy enough to play in only 12 games total in the last two seasons.

The reality is the Jets have had very little stability and continuity up front under Douglas’ watch, but he’s confident that things will be different this time.

“Yeah, it’s a lot of pieces,” he said. “At the same time, we just had some unbelievable meetings with our coaching staff, free-agent meetings . . . We feel like there’s some guys that can come in and be the right type of fit for us in terms of the intelligence, toughness, reliability. There’s some good candidates out there that can come in and help us.”

Owner Woody Johnson has put Douglas and coach Robert Saleh on alert that the Jets have to win this season. Having Vera-Tucker back will be a big help.

He tore his Achilles tendon last season, but Douglas said the rehab is “going outstanding.”

Vera-Tucker is equally effective as a guard or tackle. There’s no decision yet on where he will line up, but the Jets plan to keep him in one spot after he bounced around the past two seasons.

“I think we’re in a really good situation because particularly of the flexibility that AVT provides us,” Douglas said. “We don’t have any decision on exactly where he’s going to line up. But his ability to play four different spots and four different spots well gives us a lot of flexibility moving forward [with] our roster-building, O-line-building.”

The Jets could put Vera-Tucker at tackle and work more on the interior of the offensive line.

Either way, some free-agent tackles who could be on the Jets’ radar include David Bahktiari — Rodgers’ former tackle in Green Bay and close friend — Tyron Smith, Trent Brown and Mike Onwenu. Some guards they could pursue are Kevin Zeitler, Andrus Peat, Dalton Risner and Robert Hunt.

The Jets also have the No. 10 pick in the draft. Oregon State tackle Taliese Fuaga and Alabama’s JC Latham are possible options if the Jets don’t trade up to grab Notre Dame’s Joe Alt or Penn State’s Olu Fashanu.

Returning interior lineman Wes Schweitzer and tackle Carter Warren will be in the mix up front. McGovern could be, too. He ended the season on injured reserve after dislocating a kneecap, and he and Tippmann, who had a solid rookie season, worked well together.

Rebuilding the offensive line and keeping it on the field are the key to the 2024 season for the Jets.

“If the O-line’s healthy, the quarterback will be healthy,” Saleh said. “If the quarterback’s healthy, we’ll all be healthy.”

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