Word on Sam Darnold started to get out during the NFL Combine last season.
While teams watched video on defensive players on the side of the ball, they couldn’t help but notice the zip, accuracy, and poise Darnold had in the pocket.
The buzz started to crescendo, and he was anointed as the favorite to win the Heisman, and likely the first overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft.
He’s been good through the first four weeks of USC’s season, and it’s hard to argue with the 4-0 record he’s guided them to. However, Darnold is no longer considered the favorite to win the Heisman trophy, and according to Mike Leach isn’t ready for the NFL yet.
For clarity’s sake, the majority of Leach’s statement is about students coming out of high school and wanting to make the jump to the NFL. It’s tough to argue that any high-school player would be ready to face an NFL caliber opposition, regardless of natural skill or ability.
But when it comes to Darnold, Leach seems to think that he could be an NFL quality quarterback eventually. Just not today.
Fortunately for Sam Darnold, he isn’t in the NFL this week.
You never know how someone is going to develop once they get to the highest level. Remover the “Suck for Luck” campaign? Andrew Luck is yet to get his team deep into the playoffs, while Russell Wilson has led the Seahawks to multiple Super Bowl appearances after being taken in the third round of the same draft.
While Leach’s comment’s don’t provide much “I’ll show you!” type fuel, perhaps Darnold will try to muster some inspiration out this statement anyway.
The Trojans square off against Mike Leache and his Washington State Cougars on Friday, Sept. 29.
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