Darnold is regarded as arguably the best quarterback in the upcoming NFL Draft. But of course, we have to take a look at his biggest weakness.
The biggest knock on Darnold is his issue with turnovers. Last season, Darnold had 13 interceptions and 9 fumbles lost. That is certainly alarming, as a turnover machine is the last thing any team wants when in search of a franchise quarterback. Darnold will have to make better decisions in the NFL, or opposing secondaries will feast with him under center.
But there is so much upside with Darnold. He throws a very accurate ball which is needed when playing in the NFL. Darnold has the ability to hit tight windows, which certainly has raised the eyebrows of scouts. Another positive to Darnold’s game is his ability to work in and out of the pocket. In today’s NFL game, quarterbacks are generally able to work with heavy pressure. Darnold has that ability because he is such a great athlete.
And of course, since he is such great athlete, Darnold does have the ability to tuck the ball and run. He might not be the best running quarterback in the draft, but he is certainly capable of leaving the pocket and taking off. With Darnold’s ability to throw an accurate ball as well as work out of the pocket, it absolutely seems like he is the most talented quarterback in this draft. He just looks like an NFL quarterback.
Despite projections that Darnold will go number one overall to the Cleveland Browns, there is a scenario where he would be available when the Jets are on the clock at three. The Browns reportedly are strongly considering Josh Allen. If they take Allen, and the New York Giants decide to pass up on a quarterback at two and take Saquon Barkley instead, that would leave Sam Darnold falling right in the Jets’ lap.
But, what sits in the back of the minds of Jets fans is the comparison between Darnold and Mark Sanchez. By no means do these two quarterbacks have similar styles of play, but they come from the same college (USC), and Darnold turned the ball over a lot more in college than Sanchez did. Of course, we all remember the turnover issues Sanchez had in the NFL.
But, being that Darnold has so little flaws compared to the other quarterback prospects, all signs lead to him being the best quarterback in this very talented, quarterback central draft.
Sam Darnold could certainly handle the pressures of New York just fine. He played at a California school with fans that have high expectations every year. The only area that can defeat him is himself by throwing turnovers. If he figures out how to limit turnovers in the NFL, he could be on his way to a great professional career.