Sam Darnold is one of the stud quarterbacks expected to be taken early in the 2018 NFL Draft later this month (April 26 – 28). Josh Allen, Baker Mayfield and Josh Rosen are some of the others. But just how high will the former USC QB come off the boards and which team will grab him? Is there any possibility that the 6-4, 220-pound QB could slip out of the top three selections? Here are some of the scenarios based off the latest reports involving Darnold.
Cleveland Browns A Lock On Taking Darnold?
Mayfield is making his pre-draft visit with the Browns on Tuesday with Darnold, Allen and Rosen expected to make their visits with the franchise this week, according to Cleveland.com. Browns coach Hugh Jackson told the website that the organization is “very close” about agreeing on its top choice for QB.
“We all have a pretty good understanding of who the guys are, what they bring to the table,” Jackson said. “They’re all very worthy candidates. They’re all kind of different. But then again, we have to see what’s the best fit for us.”
He added that it shouldn’t be a forgone conclusion that Darnold will get the Browns’ top QB nod, despite that seeming to be the growing public sentiment.
“We all know that could happen, but it could not happen, too,” Jackson told the website about Darnold being seleted by the Browns. “We’re open and very in the process and haven’t made that decision yet and we’re working towards it. But I don’t think any of those things are out of the possibility.”
Giants Eyeing Darnold Over Barkley
ESPN’s renowned NFL/college football draft analyst, Mel Kiper Jr., made a key change in his mock draft 3.0 last week. After predicting in his mock draft 2.0 that the Giants would select electric running back Saquon Barkley with the second pick, Kiper adjusted that thought in his 3.0 mock draft to forecast that the Giants will take Darnold, instead. The reason for the change? Well, Kiper said that Darnold had the best Pro Day amongst quarterbacks and he thinks it has become a “1 and 1A” QB situation between Allen and Darnold, respectively. Kiper believes that the Browns will take the former with the No. 1 pick to make the latter QB fall into the lap of the Giants, where he could sit, watch and learn from Eli Manning. Kiper’s prediction is further fueled by former Giants defensive end Chris Canty telling Golic and Wingo late last month that he wouldn’t rule Big Blue out from trading up with the Browns to secure the top pick and draft Darnold because they’re bigger on him than any of the other QBs, as reported by NJ.com.
Or do the Giants want teams to believe that, so they could safely secure Barkley?
“I would bet the Giants would move out of the number two pick. They could move down, but I wouldn’t rule out them moving up.”
— Golic and Wingo (@GolicAndWingo) March 23, 2018
Are The Jets A Player For Darnold?
When the Jets moved up from the sixth spot in the Draft to the third, Gang Green made its intentions clear that it was hell-bent on finally landing the franchise QB that has painfully evaded them and their suffering fan base for decades. But according to SI.com, the Jets haven’t even bothered to set up a workout with Darnold as of last week. Meanwhile, they have already worked out Mayfield and Rosen, with Allen expected to work out for them this week. The Jets’ failure to schedule a workout with Darnold could simply spell that the quarterback is a lock to be selected as the first or second overall pick and thus, they want to concentrate their time and energy elsewhere.