Grading the Sam Darnold trade
The loyal fanbase of the Carolina Panthers has been screaming for a different look at the quarterback position and Sam Darnold certainly has a different style to his game. He is also young and still in the developmental stage of his career at only 23 years old despite seemingly being around forever considering everything that’s transpired during his time with the New York Jets.
Those facts paired with the offensive-minded coaching staff of the Panthers – especially one of the brightest young minds in the game as his coordinator – and the relatively small price the team paid means that they could come out of this very well.
The worst-case scenario regarding this move is Carolina loses a couple of mid-round picks and Darnold washes out. But with the upside he could have in a different environment, the team could have a starter for years to come.
This is the definition of a low-risk, high reward pickup by the Panthers at a time when quarterback options were becoming less and less available. They failed to land Matthew Stafford, the Deshaun Watson deal is dead in the water for now, and it doesn’t appear as if Carolina was sold on any of the signal-callers coming out of college outside of Trevor Lawrence and Zach Wilson.
Grade – B
If Darnold can limit his turnovers and consistently perform on the level he has shown glimpses of there won’t be a question about who won this trade.