Sources – Jets pick up QB Tyrod Taylor and guard John Simpson

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. — Securing a new backup for Aaron Rodgers and adding to their offensive line, the New York Jets agreed to terms Monday night with former New York Giants quarterback Tyrod Taylor and former Baltimore Ravens guard John Simpson, sources confirmed to ESPN.

In another late-night move, the Jets finalized a trade for former San Francisco 49ers defensive tackle Javon Kinlaw, a 2020 first-round pick.

On the first day of free agency, the Jets addressed their two biggest needs on offense. They have been transparent in their desire to replace Zach Wilson as their backup quarterback. Wilson, who was drafted No. 2 overall in 2021, is expected to be traded or released. They also expressed a goal of adding three starters to the offensive line, their weakest squad in 2023.

In Taylor, they are getting an experienced player who knows the New York market. The big question is its durability. Taylor started five games for the New York Giants — his sixth NFL team — in 2023. He threw for 1,341 yards with five touchdown passes and three interceptions.

After making three appearances in place of injured player Daniel Jones, Taylor's season was again interrupted by injury. He suffered four broken ribs in a midseason loss to the New York Jets.

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The veteran quarterback, who turns 35 on Aug. 3, was eventually pushed back into the starting lineup over Tommy DeVito in the second half of a Week 16 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles. Taylor started the final two weeks of the season throwing for 616 yards and a pair of TDs.

The 2011 sixth-round pick of the Baltimore Ravens has a 28-28-1 record as a starter. He has thrown for 12,135 yards, 65 touchdowns, and 29 interceptions while completing 61.7% of his passes for the Ravens, Los Angeles Chargers, Houston Texans, Buffalo Bills, Cleveland Browns, and Giants.

He won a Super Bowl as a member of the Ravens in 2013 and made the Pro Bowl with the Bills in 2015. Taylor has also rushed for 2,268 yards and 19 touchdowns during his career.

A source confirmed that Taylor will sign a two-year contract. A source said Simpson will sign a two-year contract that could be worth up to $18 million. The agreements were first reported by NFL Network.

Simpson is expected to replace left guard Lakin Tomlinson, who was released on February 26. Simpson joins center Joe Tippman and goalkeeper Alijah Vera-Tucker in the expected starting lineup. Vera-Tucker can play right guard or any point tackle.

In his first full season with the Ravens in 2023, Simpson started every game at left guard. Simpson, who turns 27 on Aug. 19, ranked 24th among guards in pass block win rate (92.5%) and 67th among pass block win rate (66.3%). His eight sacks allowed were the second-most on a Ravens team.

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He was among the most durable offensive linemen last year, playing a team-high 1,159 snaps. Simpson was flagged for ten penalties, including a team-worst six for holding. The Ravens had an opening at left guard after signing Ben Powers with the Denver Broncos last season. Simpson joined the Ravens' practice squad in December 2022 and then won a training camp battle in 2023 over rookie Malaesala Aumavae-Laulu and former third-round pick Ben Cleveland.

Simpson was selected in the fourth round in the 2020 draft by the Las Vegas Raiders, and started 21 games in three seasons — including all 17 in 2021. He was waived by the Raiders in December 2022 and was picked up by Baltimore nine days later.

In Kinlaw, whose one-year deal was first reported by ESPN's Adam Schefter, the Jets get a rotational piece for their defensive line. With Solomon Thomas, Quinton Jefferson and Al Woods becoming free agents, they need to sign multiple defensive tackles. Kinlaw, who the 49ers drafted with the 14th overall pick in 2020 in hopes he could replace star DeForest Buckner, has had a career filled with stops and starts due to injuries, especially to his knees.

Finally healthy in 2023, Kinlaw had his best professional season as the primary backup behind Javon Hargrave and Arik Armstead on the interior. He appeared in all 17 regular season games and finished with 25 tackles, 3.5 sacks, and 12 pressures. He also had four tackles in the Super Bowl LVIII loss to the Kansas City Chiefs.

Over his first three seasons, Kinlaw, 26, was limited to just 24 games and recorded just 1.5 sacks and an interception. Because of those struggles, the Niners declined the fifth-year option on Kinlaw's rookie contract before the 2023 season.

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ESPN's Jordan Rannan, Jamison Hensley and Nick Wagner contributed to this report.

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