Sam Darnold has officially had his first practice as a New York Jet. While his accuracy and deep ball impressed onlookers, his play was not perfect.
On a cloudy Friday afternoon in New Jersey, Darnold officially took his first snap as an NFL quarterback.
The New York Jets rookie mini camp started Friday May 4 and featured Jets drafted rookies, undrafted free agents, rookie tryouts, and first year roster players.
The Jets have six draftees, nine UDFAs, and more than 40 unsigned players looking to tryout, so it was an eventful first day.
The story of course was New York’s No. 3 pick Darnold. In interviews he showed his USC media trained poise and a calm presence that is impressive for a 20 year old rookie.
Per Eric Allen, when asked about his plan for camp Darnold responded,
“Consistency. I think that’s the biggest thing. I’m just going to come in here and be consistent every single day, do what I need to do: lift, eat right, get with Coach Bates, get with Josh and Teddy, learn everything that is installed that day. It’s a daily process that I go through. If I treat every single day like it’s the most important day, I think that’s really where my success is going to come from.”
During drills Darnold showcased short pass accuracy and some very pretty deep balls that had reporters salivating.
During the no camera section of practice, Darnold gave the Jets a taste of how efficient he can be when he has to move out of the pocket.
The rookie did struggle however in under center exchanges. He fumbled three of them and also took a handful of sacks and one interception.
Coming from a USC system where he rarely took snaps from the center, the fumbles are no cause for panic just yet.
While head coach Todd Bowles was very impressed with how Darnold did his first day, he also understood that his mishaps were normal.
“It’s Day 1, obviously, but he threw some good balls,” Bowles said. “He threw balls he’s got to be dusting rust off. On Day 1 you’ve got to expect that. But we’re pleased with the way he threw the ball.”
Bowles made media and fans chuckle at the start of his post practice interview when he got asked about Darnold.
Todd Bowles is HYPED about Sam Darnold. ( ⬆️) pic.twitter.com/8LaOW6VxWb— NFL on ESPN (@ESPNNFL) May 5, 2018
All in all, Darnold had a solid rookie first day. His accuracy and deep balls were the highlights for media and fans alike.
Sights and sounds from Darnold’s first day:
Top 5 Observations of Sam Darnold's first day at #Jets rookie minicamp: https://t.co/NvVZ8LVBu5 #Jets— Manish Mehta (@MMehtaNYDN) May 5, 2018
1) Comfortable & confident in who he is
2) Cool, but not aloof
3) Great at throwing on the move
4) Quietly encouraging of teammates
5) Hall of Fame hair pic.twitter.com/ZgwmD1FlpE