The Jets drafted Sam Darnold to be their quarterback of the future and it looks like that future is officially going to start on September 10.   

According to, the Jets have decided that Darnold will be the team’s starting quarterback for their regular season opener in Detroit, which shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone who followed the Jets during the preseason. 

Apparently, the Jets were determined to get all of their quarterback decisions out of the way on Wednesday. The decision to start Darnold came just hours after the team traded away Teddy Bridgewater to the Saints. 

With Darnold, it became pretty clear that he was going to start if he was ready, and the Jets clearly felt he was ready after watching him play in three preseason games. At first the Jets slowly eased him into action by letting him come off the bench against the Falcons. After that, Darnold started New York’s next two preseason games against the Redskins and Giants. 

Although Darnold didn’t put up any flashy numbers during those three preseason games, Jets coach Todd Bowles was more than happy with what he saw. 

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“He didn’t turn the ball over, and he did everything he was asked to do,” Bowles said after the Jets third preseason game against the Giants, a 22-16 loss. 

During his three preseason appearances, Darnold completed 64.4 percent of his passes (29 of 45) for 244 yards and two touchdowns. The rookie also threw one interception, which came in the Jets’ 15-13 loss to the Redskins. 

Although there have been plenty of rookie starting quarterbacks throughout NFL history, Darnold will actually be setting an NFL record when he takes the field in the Jets’ opener. Darnold will be 21 years and 97 days old on Sept. 10, which will make him the youngest opening day starter since the AFL-NFL merger in 1970. However, he won’t be the youngest starter ever, because that honor belongs to Tommy Maddox, who was 21 years and 81 days old when he made his first start in November 1992. 

The bad news for the Jets is that 21-year-old quarterbacks tend to struggle when they play in an opener. The youngest quarterbacks to start in Week 1 over the past 30 years are Drew Bledsoe with the Patriots (21 years and 204 days old), Matthew Stafford with the Lions (21, 219), Jameis Winston with the Buccaneers (21, 250), and DeShone Kizer with the Browns (21, 151). Not only did all four of those quarterbacks lose their Week 1 start, but they lost by an average score of 36.5 to 18.3. 


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