When an NFL team wins two games in a row, it’s usually a good thing. That is, of course, if you’re the New York Jets in 2020.
After beginning the season 0-13 and in the driver’s seat for Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence, the Jets have won back-to-back games against the Los Angeles Rams and Cleveland Browns and surrendered the first overall pick in the 2021 NFL draft to the Jacksonville Jaguars, who lost to the Chicago Bears on Sunday.
It could be worse for Jets fans, especially the segment of which that’s already moved on from quarterback Sam Darnold. The second overall pick will provide New York with an opportunity to draft a fantastic quarterback prospect in either Ohio State’s Justin Fields or BYU’s Zach Wilson, both of whom profile as players with a higher upside than what Darnold’s shown through his first three seasons in the league.
Still, neither is on or near the level of Lawrence, who’s considered by everyone in the scouting community as a generational prospect.
The Jets will close out their season in Week 17 against the New England Patriots and if they manage to end the year with three-straight wins, there will be some optimism (maybe?) for Gang Green in 2021.
Darnold completed 16-of-32 passes for 175 yards and two touchdowns against the Browns and has three touchdowns and zero interceptions in the Jets’ bizarre two-game winning streak. It’s difficult imagining a scenario in which New York passes on a top quarterback prospect because of Darnold’s late-season play, but these are the Jets after all.
Through three seasons in New York, Darnold owns a 13-24 record as a starter with 44 touchdown passes and 37 interceptions, hardly a strong enough resume to dismiss Fields or Wilson at the second pick.