Why Joe Douglas waited so lengthy to commerce Sam Darnold


There was an evidence for the delay.

Joe Douglas was being affected person, but additionally needed to see the highest quarterbacks within the draft in individual earlier than finally deciding his plans on the place. It’s why the Jets waited so lengthy to maneuver Sam Darnold, after quarterbacks Matthew Stafford, Jared Goff and Carson Wentz have been dealt previous to the free-agency interval.

“I don’t know the way each workforce approaches a quarterback [evaluation], however I’ve all the time thought it was a golden rule — you don’t ever take a quarterback till you stand close to or subsequent to a man and watch him throw the soccer,” Douglas informed Sports activities Illustrated. “Not one of the prime brass have been in a position to get out to a BYU sport this 12 months. There have been no all-star video games, no mix. You could possibly see Mac Jones on the Senior Bowl. However aside from that, your solely alternative to face there and watch them throw was at a professional day. To me, that’s big for a quarterback.”

Douglas noticed all the prime quarterbacks – Zach Wilson of BYU, Justin Fields of Ohio State, Mac Jones of Alabama and Trey Lance of North Dakota State – the Jets will be capable of choose from with the second alternative within the draft. (Clemson’s Trevor Lawrence is broadly anticipated to be chosen No. 1 by the Jacksonville Jaguars.)

Jets GM Joe Douglas traded Sam Darnold to the Panthers.
Jets GM Joe Douglas traded Sam Darnold to the Panthers.
Getty Photos

“Nearly each professional day I went to I acquired one thing out of,” Douglas mentioned. “A man like Trey Lance, I believed Trey Lance had a robust arm, I walked away from North Dakota State saying, ‘Wow, this man has higher arm expertise than I believed on the tape.’ Getting a way for it, watching the ball come out of his hand, you’re there, field-level, you’re seeing it –does the ball drop in any respect on the finish of the throw, is it accelerating by the man’s palms? You actually get a way for that, that you simply wouldn’t usually see on tape.”

Ultimately, the Jets traded Darnold to the Panthers for a sixth-rounder this 12 months and second-round and fourth-round picks in 2022. They almost moved him earlier than free company, the overall supervisor mentioned, however the workforce wasn’t prepared to tug the set off.

“It was a robust provide,” Douglas mentioned. “We informed them, ‘Look, there’s nonetheless plenty of containers left to test. And we simply don’t really feel comfy, in case one thing occurs with one of many prime two guys, we don’t need to get caught in a foul scenario, like one in all two guys fails a bodily after which we don’t have Sam.’ So we didn’t do something.”

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