FLORHAM PARK, New Jersey – Explaining the biggest trade for his two-year term, New York Jets general manager Joe Douglas said that the decision to deal with quarterback Sam Darnold was largely based on two factors – a position plan and finances.
“I think it’s safe to say that if our choice had been a little later, we wouldn’t be having this discussion right now,” Douglas told reporters on Tuesday on a call for an increase. “It will be perfectly comfortable for us to move on with Sam.”
The Jets, taking second place in the NFL draft on April 29, traded Darnold with the Carolina Panthers for three options – a choice of a sixth round in 2021
In second place, the Jets are expected to choose BYU quarterback Zack Wilson.
Douglas downplayed the opportunity to trade the spade. He admitted the obvious, saying they were locked in a quarterback. But he would not say who, insisting that a final decision be made.
“We feel really good about the draft class in general and the quarterback class in particular,” Douglas said. “It was an opportunity to financially press the reset button, so to speak.”
That was a big factor, sources say.
The second choice in the project will receive a four-year contract worth $ 35 million, a fully guaranteed – fixed cost that will allow financial flexibility in the coming years. Darnold, meanwhile, had to count $ 9.8 million in the last year of his rookie contract. The Jets could exercise its fifth-year option for 2022, but the price would be $ 18.9 million.
That would be $ 28.7 million in two years, compared to $ 35 million in four. There is also a $ 5 million hit for trading with Darnold.
Although Douglas has boasted of Darnold, the organization believes it will find an upgrade with the second choice. Darnold, who finished third overall in 2018, did not live up to expectations and was the lowest-ranked passer in the league in the last three seasons.
Douglas acknowledged that the planes had not done enough to help Darnold, saying they needed to do a better job of getting around the next quarterback with talent.
The team toyed with the idea of keeping Darnold and pairing him with a rookie, Douglas confirmed. In the end, the Jets decided that this would distract all parties.
“In the end, this would not be the best situation for Sam, for a quarterback rookie, for a coach. [Robert] Saleh and his staff and the locker room, Douglas said. – We thought this was the best solution for the whole organization moving forward by pressing the reset button.
Douglas said he had “talked to many teams,” including the Panthers, about the second choice, but that he would not characterize any of those discussions as significant.
The plan is to stay at No. 2 and choose a quarterback. Without the disorder, it will be Wilson. If they had chosen 12 to 14, they would have rolled with Darnold, GM said.
“Based on the decision we made [Monday]”Douglas said,” you can see the direction we’re heading. “