Sam Darnold on facing Jets in Week 1: I go out there and compete against anyone

Miami Dolphins v New York Jets
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Quarterback Sam Darnold is working with a new team after being traded to the Panthers this offseason and the NFL schedule makers assured he would get a lot of questions about his old one once the regular season gets underway.

The Panthers will host the Jets in Week 1 of the regular season, which means that Darnold will have a few opportunities to discuss his feelings about facing the team that traded him before kickoff. One of them came in a media session last week and it saw Darnold separate his personal history from what’s in front of the team.

“I think it’s a really good opportunity — a good opportunity for this team to go out and prove ourselves against a good opponent,” Darnold said, via “For me as a competitor, I’m going to go out there and compete no matter who the opponent is, so that’s kind of my mindset on it.”

Whatever Darnold says publicly, one imagines the prospect of getting his Panthers tenure off on the right foot while also dealing the Jets a blow is one that means a little bit more than some other games.

10 responses to “Sam Darnold on facing Jets in Week 1: I go out there and compete against anyone

  1. Sam Darnold is going to blow the Jets off the field. He finally has an organization that will surround him with talent and coaches that will actually believe in him.

    I watched him and Josh Allen very closely since they’ve been drafted and how we in Buffalo did everything possible to help Allen succeed while the Jets absolutely smothered Sam Darnold’s progress.

    He will have a Tannehill-esc resurgence after leaving the AFC East.

  2. Sam is going to get a first hand look on why the Jets traded him in order to draft Wilson. Three OTAs in and Wilson already looks better than Sam ever did. Watch out AFC East, ZW is lurking.

  3. Week 1 doesn’t matter, and beating the Jets proves nothing. I’m sure Sam Darnold would say the same thing. He wants to beat the Chiefs and the Bucs. That’s the mindset.

  4. I hope he throws 5 TD’s, has zero picks and the Panthers walk away winners 41 to 0.

  5. Why does everyone think Darnold is going to suddenly thrive? Yes, the Jets surrounded him with bad coaching and bad talent. But he never showed anything. Not one bit of promise that would make you think he’s a franchise QB. He was inconsistent in college, he’s been inconsistent in the NFL, but he’s suddenly going to become a great QB?

  6. Darnold had flashes ..One hopes with better coaching and players around him the flashes are more common..Joe Douglas is not an impulsive guy ..I have confidence that he not only saw Sam play this year but he watched the tape of the first two years as well and his opinion is Trevor Lawrence and Zach Wilson had more upside and they are cheaper on the rookie deal…hope Sam plays well starting in game 2

  7. Darnold was wildly inconsistent with the Jets. True, he wasn’t surrounded by good teams but it wasn’t like they were losing despite Darnold playing great. For the most part, he was average-at-best, while providing the same amount of “wow” moments as head scratchers.

    If he had shown the management and coaching staff enough over the past three years to warrant a contract extension, the Jets could have chosen to keep him around and take Pitts or Sewell to solidify the offense. Instead, they drafted his replacement.

    On paper, the Panthers are a better team than the Jets right now and should win the opener in front of their home crowd. That by no means should be used as a measuring stick for Darnold and/or Wilson. Something tells me if these two teams instead played in Week 18, there might be a different result.

  8. It’d be so much more fun if Gase were still the coach and you could see him with his eyes popping out of his head as Darnold ran up the score.

  9. Sports media is desperate to turn this into some kind of WWE grudge match and a lot of fans will go along with it.

    Leave Darnold alone and stop trying to manufacture something that isn’t there just to get more clicks.

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