Columbus Blue Jackets 2023-24 player review: Jake Bean

Jake Bean entered this season with another opportunity to prove himself as an NHL defenseman. One year later, we're still not exactly sure what the Blue Jackets have here.
Colorado Avalanche v Columbus Blue Jackets
Colorado Avalanche v Columbus Blue Jackets / Jason Mowry/GettyImages

Jake Bean's NHL career has not gone according to plan. Originally selected in the 1st round (#13 overall) at the 2016 NHL Draft, Bean just finished his fourth season in the league.

Frankly, he hasn't lived up to expectations for a guy taken so high in the draft.

After losing a full year due to a torn labrum suffered in the 14th Blue Jacket game last season, Bean came back this year with loftier expectations.

While the club did go out and provide some security - adding two defensemen who slotted ahead of Jake on the depth chart - this year was crucial for him to re-establish himself.

For the team to take a step forward and start pulling out of their rebuild, they needed a lot of young guys to play into stronger roles. Jake Bean included.

Honestly, he was just "okay" for the club this year. His time on ice averaged 16:19 per game, which isn't really low enough for me to say he didn't get his opportunities.

But in 72 games played, he put up just 4 goals and 13 points for the Blue Jackets. That's just not good enough for a guy who was drafted for his offensive acumen.

Worse, he leaves a lot to be desired defensively. He's frequently out-matched physically, often losing puck battles along the boards and in front of the net.

He's a good skater, but didn't seem to have much confidence joining the rush this year; which should be the meat and potatoes of his game.

When you add it all up, you have a player who is turning 26 years old this summer - right in his prime - who hasn't been able to produce enough offensively to make up for his serious shortcomings defensively. With a building history of injuries.

On a team that has struggled mightily to keep pucks out of their net, I'm not sure where Jake fits in after this year. He's a restricted free agent, but with the prior GM being let go, there aren't any real ties to keep him here.

And, his play just hasn't helped. Perhaps he's another guy who just needs a change of scenery to get his career back on track. Maybe the Jackets could benefit here as well, by adding someone more defensive-minded in his place.

Final season stats: 72 games played, 4 goals, 9 assists, 13 points, -10, 32PiMs, 76 shots on goal. . . Jake Bean 2023-24 season grade:. Jake Bean. D

Jake was just not good enough to get a passing grade. Even though he played against secondary competition on a lot of nights, he was a big part of the team's ballooned goals against average this year - and his offensive numbers didn't help his cause.