Dan Orlovsky, a football analyst for ESPN, made an appearance on the “MySportsUpdate” podcast, and he was asked if he would rather have Darnold or New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones under center for the next 10 years.
Not only did Orlovsky choose Darnold, but he took it a step further by saying that he would take Darnold over “every young QB that’s come into the NFL the last three years.”
If you go back to the 2018 NFL Draft, that includes quarterbacks like Cleveland Browns’ Baker Mayfield, Buffalo Bills’ Josh Allen, reigning NFL MVP Lamar Jackson of the Baltimore Ravens, Arizona Cardinals’ Kyler Murray, and other signal-callers in the 2020 draft class like Cincinnati’s Joe Burrow, Tua Tagovailoa of the Miami Dolphins, and Los Angeles Chargers’ rookie Justin Herbert.
That is certainly a bold claim by Orlovsky, especially since Jackson has been the most productive out of all the quarterbacks who entered the league since 2018, but Darnold has been dealt a terrible hand since taking over under center for the Jets. The team has yet to put a viable option at wide receiver for him, and they’ve pieced together a well-below average offensive line, failing to give Darnold any protection.
The Jets addressed some of their issues in the draft, by selecting former Louisville offensive lineman Mekhi Becton with their first-round pick, and they took former Baylor wideout Denzel Mims in the second round, who will step into a starting role right away for the Jets. Darnold should improve in 2020, especially with the AFC East up for grabs since Tom Brady is no longer the quarterback of the New England Patriots.