By the time August 1 rolls around, teams have a solid idea of what their depth chart will generally look like come September. Transactions will occur many times between now and September as guys get hurt and players are waived.
The New York Jets will be one of these teams shuffling the bottom of the roster, but on Thursday they got a surprise veteran addition that one usually does not get this time of year. Center Ryan Kalil will come out of retirement to join the Jets, according to Ian Rapoport.
This is a fortuitous series of events for New York, who had no real answer at center heading into training camp. They’re aware of the benefits of having a good center after enjoying the services of Nick Mangold for many years. Kalil retired earlier this offseason.
Kalil, a five-time Pro Bowler, may not be at his physical prime anymore, but knowing what the defense is going to throw at you is a big part of playing center. After 12 years in the league, Kalil knows how to read a defense and call out the mike. At the very least, he’ll provide a valuable veteran presence for a team reliant on their young guys to win this year.
As a side note, this is probably painful for Panthers fans, who watched Kalil toil his entire career and never won a Super Bowl before retiring a few months ago. Football can be cruel.