New York Jets Open to Trading Quarterback Sam Darnold
The position of the New York Jets regarding Sam Darnold appears to have changed.
The general manager of the Jets, Joe Douglas, had previously stated that he had no plans of trading away Darnold, who was considered to be their franchise quarterback. He has now come forward with a new mindset, stating that he is open to listening to trade offers. The Jets have already taken calls from multiple teams, and now face a major decision about the future of their organization.
The Jets finished the 2020 NFL season with a 2-14 record, which netted them the second overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. Most draft experts have Clemson superstar Trevor Lawrence being drafted first overall by the Jacksonville Jaguars, but there are still a number of viable options at the quarterback position beyond Lawrence, particularly BYU product Zach Wilson. If the Jets want, they can trade Darnold for players or draft capital, and start fresh with Wilson. However, there is another element in the market in the form of Deshaun Watson. Watson has made it clear that he has no desire to remain with the Houston Texans, and despite the team’s public statements on their intention to keep him, it would not be a surprise if he is traded before the beginning of the 2021 season. A player of Watson’s caliber will require numerous early round draft picks in return, which the Jets currently possess, with two first-round draft picks in both 2021 and 2022. If they want, the Jets could make Houston a strong offer for Watson, but it is unclear if they want to give up that amount of capital for one player.
As it stands, the Jets have three options: stick with Darnold and use their high draft pick to fill holes at other positions, trade Darnold and take a quarterback with the No. 2 pick, or make a package that the Texans will be unable to refuse for Deshaun Watson.
The Jets have had little to no success in the past decade, and this decision will have a heavy impact on their fortune in the 2020s.