NY Jets: 49ers not expected to pursue Sam Darnold

NY Jets, Sam Darnold (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images)
NY Jets, Sam Darnold (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images) /

NY Jets‘ quarterback Sam Darnold is expected to have his fair share of potential suitors this offseason. That is, of course, if the Jets ultimately decide to trade him, as has heavily been rumored.

But it looks like one of the formerly-perceived heavy favorites for Darnold won’t actually be targeting him.

NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport went on the KNBR radio station in San Francisco on Friday to discuss the San Francisco 49ers’ quarterback situation. And he insisted that he doesn’t believe the 49ers will be in on Darnold.

“The response I’ve received on the Sam Darnold situation is, ‘do not expect the 49ers to be in it. Maybe it could change I guess theoretically anything is possible, I never rule anything out in this ridiculous, stupid world. I do not expect the 49ers, as of my knowledge right now, to be in it.”

This comes as a bit of a surprise given that many assumed the 49ers would be one of the teams most interested in Darnold. But at least as of now, it appears as though that interest has either waned or was exaggerated.

Who could the NY Jets trade Sam Darnold to?

The Jets shouldn’t have a shortage of potential trade partners if they decide to deal Darnold with reports indicating that up to eight teams are interested in the former No. 3 overall pick.

Teams such as the Chicago Bears, Washington Football Team, and Carolina Panthers have been connected to Darnold in recent weeks. So too have the 49ers, although that might not be the case any longer.

Given the uncertain future of Jimmy Garoppolo in San Francisco, many saw the 49ers as a logical landing spot for Darnold given their need at the position and their lack of opportunities to upgrade.

Without a high pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, they may not have the opportunity to land one of the top quarterbacks in the upcoming class. That’s why someone like Darnold made sense.

However, they’re apparently prepared to go in a different direction.

As for the Jets, they should still have no trouble landing a fair deal for their one-time franchise quarterback. Most project the return package to be something along the lines of a second-round pick plus an additional mid-round selection.

The Jets have a little over a month to make a decision about their future at the quarterback position. With pro days for the remaining top quarterback prospects coming up, a trade could be in the near future.

Next. NY Jets: 3 realistic trade targets on defense this offseason

It remains to be seen where Darnold will be playing in 2021. But at least for now, it doesn’t appear as though it will be in San Francisco.