In his second NFL start, former USC quarterback Sam Darnold put on a show that was very familiar to the Trojan Family.
The New York Jets are currently having a heated quarterback battle with three very capable players. Veteran Josh McCown, newcomer Teddy Bridgewater, and rookie Sam Darnold all have what it takes to win games for the boys in green, but after a stellar performance from the No. 3 draft pick, it seems the job is his to lose.
There has been nothing but good things coming out of One Jets Drive on Darnold’s performance during training camp and NFL fans got to see for themselves just what the sensational rookie can do during the Jets’ Friday night preseason game against the New York Giants.
During the opening minutes of the first half Darnold fit a nifty little ball into a tight window for 12 yards and the first down.
Quincy Enunwa's first catch in over a year and my God it's a beautiful thing. #Jets pic.twitter.com/sovNxS8AdW— Conor the Mick (@TheNJMick) August 24, 2018
After another quick first down pickup, the rookie was facing his second third down of the night, and proceeded to wow Jets fans with a 14-yard scamper to move the sticks.
#Jets rookie Sam Darnold looked good on the Jets scoring drive.pic.twitter.com/jVwMVs6OzZ— Dov Kleiman (@NFL_DovKleiman) August 24, 2018
Another completion to wide receiver Robby Anderson and Darnold had the Jets in the red zone. A touchdown run from Bilal Powell on the following play notched the first scoring drive of the night into the rookie quarterback’s belt.
Darnold made his first drive look easy and was radiating the three C’s: cool, calm, and collected.
Later in the half, Darnold threw a 16-yard completion to a wide open Quincy Enunwa.
Quincy Enunwa shows why he's a quality weapon #Jets pic.twitter.com/T4vMqmY5xD— Matt O'Leary (@MattOLearyNY) August 25, 2018
With the Jets in the red zone again, the one of a kind rookie quarterback through an absolute laser to Terrelle Pryor for six and notched yet another scoring drive into his belt.
Sam Darnold to @TerrellePryor!@nyjets TD #NYGvsNYJ pic.twitter.com/8lngqsk9DN— NFL (@NFL) August 25, 2018
Darnold was 4-4 on his second scoring drive, which had Jets media singing well earned praises for their future franchise quarterback. Journalists and fans alike were complimenting Darnold’s ability to extend the play and they were in wonder of the amount of poise he continues to show as a rookie quarterback.
This level of play is no surprise to USC fans who cheered for Darnold during his two seasons with the Trojans.
Gary Phillips of The Jets Wire, had this to say about Darnold’s abilities, “It’s becoming increasingly difficult to imagine a world where Sam Darnold isn’t the Jets’ Week 1 starter.”
Darnold ended his second career start 8-16 for 86 yards and one touchdown. While he marched down the field with ease during his two scoring drives, the rookie’s night wasn’t perfect.
In the first half he suffered an intentional grounding penalty after holding onto the ball for too long and had a couple growing pain misfires. Yet, the overall aurora of his performance on Friday night was a good one.
Jets media continue to predict the former Trojan will be the starting quarterback when all is said and done, and we USC fans are not the least bit surprised that Darnold continues to impress his new fans in New York.