Now Sam Darnold is a Carolina Panther, what does that mean for the New York Jets and the franchise’s future?
Sam Darnold was drafted by the Jets in the 2018 NFL Draft, and was the third overall pick. This was after the Browns selected QB Baker Mayfield, and the Jets’ cross-town rivals, the New York Giants, opted for star running back Saquon Barkley.
As the first-round pick for the Jets, it was clear that the intention for the Jets was to build their future around Darnold. However, that’s clearly not the case now the Jets have shifted the young QB from their roster.
Sam Darnold Offloaded to Carolina
On April 5, the news broke that Darnold was being traded to the Carolina Panthers in exchange for three Draft picks. One of those picks is the Panthers’ sixth-round pick of this year’s Draft, while the other two are second-round and fourth-round picks in the 2022 Draft.
Still only 23 years old, Darnold now has the opportunity to kick start his NFL career after an underwhelming time at the Jets.
The Panthers haven’t had a consistent starting QB since Cam Newton – with 2020 starter Teddy Bridgewater injury-prone – and have taken their chances on the young QB to be the future of their franchise.
Jets General Manager Joe Douglas released a statement announcing the departure of Darnold. Douglas said: “I want to publicly acknowledge the commitment, dedication, and professionalism Sam displayed while with the Jets.
“He is a tough-minded, talented football player whose NFL story has not yet been written. While all these things are true, this move is in the short and long-term best interests for both this team and him”.
Jets’ Draft Picks
With the Darnold trade resulting in three more picks in the Draft, the Jets now have a lot of picks at their disposal. At the moment, the Jets have a total of 21 picks in the next two NFL Drafts, with seven of those falling in the first two-rounds.
2021 NFL Draft
As well as the No.2 overall pick this year, the Jets also have the No.23 overall pick – thanks to the Jamal Adams trade with the Seattle Seahawks that happened last year.
Then, following these first-round picks, the Jets will have: 1 second-round, 2 third-round, 1 fourth-round, 2 fifth-round and now 2 two-sixth round picks remaining.
The extra third-round pick is also from the Adams trade, with the extra fifth-round pick coming from the 2019 trade involving defensive lineman Leonard Williams going to the Giants.
2022 NFL Draft
In the 2022 NFL Draft, along with the acquisition of second-round and fourth-round picks, the Jets also have an extra first-round pick from the Adams trade with Seattle.
As well as the 2 first-rounders, the Jets have: 2 second-round, 1 third-round, 1 fourth-round, 2 fifth-round and now 3 sixth-round picks in next year’s Draft.
The extra fifth-rounder was gained through the Avery Williamson trade with the Pittsburgh Steelers. On top of that, the two sixth-rounders were gained from trades with San Francisco and Tampa Bay, rounding off the Jets’ picks for next year.
Future of the New York Jets
Now with a large number of picks, there’s a good chance that the Jets will bring in an array of College talent in the next few Drafts.
With the number two overall pick in this year’s Draft, it is expected that the Jets will select BYU QB Zach Wilson, who will need to make an impact in New York. It’s a defining moment for the Jets GM Joe Douglas, and at this stage, it could go either way.
The 2021 NFL Draft takes place between April 30 and May 1 in Cleveland, Ohio. Follow all the action right here @ TSFJ!
Jordan Noble is a writer that really enjoys discussing anything in and around the world of sports. He’s in his element when talking about sports, and has an ever-growing portfolio of sports news, features and reviews. When he’s not writing, you’ll find Jordan playing football – American football, that is.
He knows Manchester United are the biggest club in the world. He says that it’s just straight up facts. He loves a fight, whether that’s inside an octagon, or between the ropes, he’ll be interested.