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Jets Trading Sam Darnold To Colts, Bears Or Saints?

Jets Trading Sam Darnold To Colts, Bears Or Saints?

The New York Jets are going to trade quarterback Sam Darnold and start anew.

According to ESPN NFL insider Adam Schefter, league executives have serious questions regarding what Darnold could really command on the open market at this stage.

“If the Jets were to want a first-round pick for Darnold, it would take the right formula and combination to make it work: a quarterback-needy team, out of position to select one of the top-rated quarterbacks in the 2021 draft, yet one that believes in Darnold and had a high grade on him coming out of USC,” he reported.

“Teams potentially in that category this offseason could include the Indianapolis Colts, Chicago Bears and New Orleans Saints.”

So is a first round pick Darnold’s current value around the league?

Not unanimously.

“I don’t think they’d get a [first-round pick] for Sam, but it also depends what he puts on tape the rest of the year,” one GM said.

“The problem is, [Darnold] is struggling with his accuracy, his durability — so they’re in a tough spot. And if everyone knows the Jets are taking a quarterback, then they won’t get as much back.”

Another GM agreed with that sentiment.

“The high-water mark would be a [second-round pick] for him,” he said.

“I think they could get a [fourth-round pick] for him, but if he finished positive for him, they might get a 2 for him. In college, he was a turnover machine. In the NFL, he has been a turnover machine. I just don’t think he has the credentials to go for a 1.”

One disagreed with the rest of the group, though.

“If you still believe the guy is a top-pick-caliber quarterback, and consider his circumstances, you don’t close the door on it,” he argued.

So far this year Darnold has amassed 792 yards, three touchdowns and four interceptions. The 23-year-old is completing 59.4 percent of his passes.

Any team that trades for Darnold would need to pick up his fifth year option for $24 million – which is obviously a big ask for a quarterback who has yet to play in more than 13 games over the course of a year.

Of the three teams mentioned as possible suitors for Darnold, an easy case can be made for any one of them to pull the trigger.

Philip Rivers is 38 years old and Indianapolis needs to start planning for the future. Darnold could sit behind him for a year, and then presumably take over next season.

In Chicago, Nick Foles is doing an admirable job replacing the dumpster fire that was Mitchell Trubisky, but he is not a long-term solution. Darnold could be.

Finally, Drew Brees is showing his age more than ever this year. The Saints need a succession plan,

Regardless of where he ultimately ends up, Darnold’s days in New York appear to be numbered. A trade is happening. It’s a matter of when, not if.

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Charles Kruger

Charles Kruger has been credentialed to cover two Super Bowls, four NBA Finals, and one World Series. A 20-year veteran in the sports world, he has sources spanning the NBA, MLB, NFL, UFC and NASCAR. Currently residing in Los Angeles, Calif., he is Game 7's go-to source for rumors surrounding the Lakers, Clippers and Dodgers.

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