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This time, Jets quickly trade away a failing QB as Darnold dealt to Panthers

The New York Jets have reportedly traded quarterback Sam Darnold to the Carolina Panthers.
The New York Jets have reportedly traded quarterback Sam Darnold to the Carolina Panthers.

Same, darn old New York Jets? Not anymore. Not with the trading away of Sam Darnold.

The NFL team on Monday dealt the quarterback it selected No. 3 overall just three years ago to the Carolina Panthers, per reports, for three draft picks that didn’t exactly quake NFL earth:

A 2021 sixth-rounder, and 2022 second- and fourth-rounders.

Yeah, that’s how far Darnold’s stock fell in three years with the Jets.

The move all but assures that the Jets, with the No. 2 overall draft pick three weeks from Thursday night, will replace Darnold with the quarterback prospect widely viewed as the next-best option behind Clemson’s Trevor Lawrence in this year’s class: Rocket-armed Zach Wilson from BYU.

In more than half a century of mostly futility since winning their only Super Bowl in January 1969, the hard-luck Jets typically have compounded bad QB-acquisition decisions with worse, slow-footed decisions on when to finally move on from such failures.

Not this time.

In contrast, trading Darnold after 38 starts in 36 months should be encouraging for Jets fans. Darnold only ever flashed greatness. His 13-25 record as starter, 59.8% completions and 45-39 touchdowns-to-interceptions ratio aptly reflect his on-field struggles.

The trade is another sign that even ballyhooed rookie passers taken in the Top 5 these days had better impress — and often — before their third season is up, otherwise the front office will reach for the reset button.

Similarly, the Panthers — under impatient owner David Tepper — were not exactly hesitant after the past season about publicly expressing only tepid support for last year’s big free-agent signee, QB Teddy Bridgewater, after he went just 4-11 record as starter.

Looks like a Bridgewater-Darnold QB battle in training camp is inevitable.

Now, two of the five quarterbacks selected in the Top 10 of the 2018 NFL draft have been traded away. No. 10 pick Josh Rosen was traded by Arizona to Miami after one season, where he lasted only one year before bouncing last season from Tampa Bay to San Francisco as a down-roster backup.

Cleveland’s Baker Mayfield (No. 1 overall) and Buffalo’s Josh Allen (No. 7) appear to be panning out.

Like we always say, even top-10 QBs have no better than a coin-flip’s chance of panning out.

GLADNEY TURNS HIMSELF IN

Minnesota cornerback Jeff Gladney turned himself in to Dallas police on Monday, as he faced a third-degree felony charge of family-violence assault.

He reportedly was freed immediately on bond, after allegedly repeatedly striking his 22-year-old girlfriend last Friday in her torso with closed fists and purportedly trying to violently shove her face toward her cellphone — for the purposing of unlocking the phone with her facial ID, so he could read text messages allegedly sent to her.

The Vikings and the NFL in separate statements said they were aware of the matter, the league saying it “will review” it.

Gladney, 24, started 15 of 16 games as a rookie in Minnesota, forcing one fumble and breaking up three passes.

UP TO 22

The number of civil-assault lawsuits filed in Houston against Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson reached 22 on Monday.

The latest claimant, according to ESPN, is a licensed aesthetician who alleges Watson touched her with penis erect and exposed, and also “grabbed” her buttocks.

Houston police on Friday began a criminal investigation after a single complainant filed a report.

A FIELDS/DAY REBUTTAL

Ohio State head coach Ryan Day hotly denied an allegation made late last week by ESPN analyst and former NFL QB Dan Orlovsky that former Buckeyes QB Justin Fields routinely was the last to arrive and first to leave the school’s football facility last season.

Day told NBC Sports’ Peter King that Fields “loves the game” and, while some star Big Ten players opted out of playing in 2020, his QB launched and led the petition by league players to have conference leaders reverse their August decision to cancel the season, which eventually they did come.

Copyright Postmedia Network Inc., 2021

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