Sam Darnold Responds to the Benching of Zach Wilson
The NFL is a blessing for football players that can make it to the highest level but it can be a cruel business. Year in and year out, first rounds pick that failed to live up to expectations are labeled as “busts.” These criticisms have already been placed on Sam Darnold and now they might be placed on Zach Wilson.
Darnold was selected with the third pick in the 2018 NFL draft by the New York Jets. However, his career in New York didn’t pan out, with the 25-year-old now fighting for the starting job in Carolina. Darnold’s replacement, Wilson, was selected with the second overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. Now, the former BYU star has been benched in Week 12 of the 2022 season.
Darnold was asked about the situation surrounding Wilson and his former team and responded bluntly.
“I did see it,” Darnold told reporters last week. “Obviously, it’s a crazy business.”Quote via New York Post
There is no doubt that it is hard being a good NFL quarterback. However, for a top-five pick, becoming a good foundational piece is the lowest expectation a franchise could have for a quarterback they select in the draft. Darnold, who can relate to what Wilson is going through, shared more thoughts on what it means to play under center in the NFL.
“Playing quarterback in the NFL, it’s a tough job, but it’s the best,” Darnold said. “It’s the best job in the world.”Quote via New York Post
It will interesting to see how both of these players’ careers play out both this season and in the future. Will either of these quarterbacks get their careers back on track and deliver on their draft-day potential?
How did the situation play out in Week 12?
The Jets benched Wilson in their Week 12 matchup against the Denver Broncos. Quarterback Mike White got the start and he delivered a 31-10 win against a Chicago Bears team playing without Justin Fields. He played fantastically and finished with 315 yards, three touchdowns and a phenomenal 149.3 passer rating.
Darnold, on the other hand, delivered a solid performance of his own defeating the Denver Broncos 23-10. Denver has a top defense in the league but Darnold was able to finish with 164 yards, one touchdown, a 103.8 passer rating, and, most importantly, a win.
The two recent starting quarterbacks were successful in their first starts in a while and they will look to build off of these performances.