Adam Gase said in a press conference Monday afternoon that Sam Darnold will miss Sunday’s game against the Chargers after getting opinions from doctors in-house and out. Joe Flacco, who passed Joe Montana for twelfth all-time in passing yards prior to the bye, will start under center for the second consecutive game.
Sam Darnold followed up with a press conference and said that he had suffered an AC sprain in the Jets week eight matchup in Kansas City. Gase says he will be on a “throwing program” once he is able, and as of now, he is not. Adam Gase claims that IR is not in the conversation and Darnold says he is “very confident” that he will see the field again before the end of the season.
Should the end of the season being in the conversation concern Jets fans considering we’re entering week eleven? Well, yes. His shoulder has now had a game and a bye to rest and he’s still seemingly out indefinitely with no timetable. Nobody has a sure answer on when he will return. While Jameis Winston was able to play through an AC sprain last year, the injury can normally take 1-2 weeks to fully recover – which the Jets were willing to take. The concern is that it’s already been two weeks and he has been ruled out for this week and is not looking good for next week.
Does this mean Darnold has played his final snaps as a Jet? Highly doubtful. While he is not expected to return anytime in the near future, his shoulder will not take another seven weeks to fully heal. The team is just being overly cautious to avoid re-aggravation. The only scenario where Darnold doesn’t return this season is if the organization decides its best to sideline him for the rest of the year to prevent any other un-related injuries and keep him healthy and trade-able for the offseason. Odds this happens? Very low. If anything, the Jets would rather get a fully-healthy Darnold back on the field with his starting offense and give him the opportunity to audition for possible trade partners than bench him.