As the New York Jets prepare for training camp, here’s a breakdown of the chances rookie quarterback Sam Darnold has to actually win the starting job to begin the regular season under center.
The New York Jets are preparing for another regular season with a much different situation at quarterback. It’s been an interesting offseason so far with some new faces at the most important position on the team.
Veteran quarterback Josh McCown returns to the Jets after having the best season of his career in 2017. The Jets also brought in free agent Teddy Bridgewater to see if he can bounce back from a horrific knee injury and be a quarterback that can either start, be quality depth, or even be used as trade bait.
Of course, the name everyone is looking forward to is rookie quarterback Sam Darnold. Selected with the No. 3 overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft, Darnold brings a lot of hope and potential that he can be the future franchise quarterback this team needs for a brighter future.
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All three quarterbacks will enter training camp to be a part of an intense competition to see who the best player is that can win the Jets a lot of football games this upcoming season. Realistically though, what are Darnold’s chances to beat out McCown and Bridgewater to be the best option for the Jets?
In the grand scheme of things, it will come down to how quickly Darnold can absorb the offensive playbook and his overall execution. Darnold will also need to ensure his presence in the huddle is clear, effective, and ready for the task at hand. McCown will be the guy to beat for both Bridgewater and Darnold as it won’t be easy for either player to take down the 15-year veteran.
Here is what Albert Breer, Senior Writer of Sports Illustrated’s The MMQB, believes Darnold’s chances are to start the regular season for the Jets:
Ideally, the Jets want to give Darnold every chance in the book to be “the guy” from under center but a lot of times, hope doesn’t always equal reality. While Darnold will have a fair chance to earn the opportunity to be the Week 1 starter for the Jets, it will be extremely hard for him to put everything together in just a few months and beat out someone of McCown’s experience and skill-set to get the job done.
Even Bridgewater is ahead of Darnold on the depth chart thanks to his experience. Remember, before his knee injury, Bridgewater was a quarterback on the rise and even took the Minnesota Vikings to the NFL Playoffs. If Bridgewater surprises many during training camp and preseason action, Darnold will likely start the season as the third-string option on the depth chart.
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Overall, while it would be exciting to see Darnold start the regular season for the Jets, it will likely not happen. Expect to see McCown once again start for the Jets thanks to everything he brings to the table and the fact that he is the perfect bridge player for this current quarterback situation. Until his number is called, Darnold will have more than enough time to develop and should have a good transition to the pros since he likely won’t be rushed into anything until he is 100 percent ready.