The Jets made first-round pick Sam Darnold their starting quarterback out of the gate this season and watched his first NFL pass get intercepted for a Lions touchdown.
Things would get better for Darnold on the opening Monday night of the season as the Jets rallied for a blowout win, but the season would have plenty of rough spots to come for the rookie. He struggled for the rest of September, played well in two wins to kick off October and then threw seven interceptions in three straight losses before hurting his foot.
Darnold missed three games before returning in Week 14 to kick off a three-game stretch that’s seen him play his best football of the season. That run has brightened the outlook for Darnold heading into 2019 and the rookie is focused on making that the norm in the future.
“I look back on those wins and how we played and how much potential we had as a team,” Darnold said, via Brian Costello of the New York Post. “Yeah, we didn’t finish out the way that we wanted, record-wise. It gives you hope as a player, as a fan, as a coach of this team that the future is bright. We were in all of these games, except for Buffalo. As an organization and as a fan base, I feel like everyone should be very hopeful and very excited about where this team is heading.”
It remains to be seen who will be coaching the Jets and calling the plays on offense for the Jets next year, but their stay should be a more fruitful one than Todd Bowles has experienced if the Darnold of the last month is a sign of where things are headed.