Jets rookie quarterback Sam Darnold got a nice review of his work from one of the team’s older players at the position on Tuesday and it was offensive coordinator Jeremy Bates’ chance to talk about the third overall pick’s progress.
The word was once again positive. Bates said that Watching Darnold “execute football on the practice field is pretty exciting” and that the rookie has “been able to handle” everything the team has thrown his way since the draft in April. He also made it clear that they’ve been throwing everything they can in his direction.
“Are we giving him bits and pieces of the offense or are we throwing everything at him? We’re throwing everything at him,” Bates said, via Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News. “If he can handle it, if he can prove that he’s the starter, then that will take place when the time comes.”
However much Bates and company have come up with the last couple of months, there’s only so much a team can throw at a quarterback in OTAs and minicamp before the lack of contact and opposition forces them to a ceiling.
Before any serious thought can be given to Darnold starting a game in the regular season, he’ll have to show he can handle what other teams are throwing at him in the preseason. The Jets kick off that portion of their schedule on August 10 against the Falcons.