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Jayden Daniels: Why Transfer Now? Exploring Potential Reasons

Arizona State quarterback Jayden Daniels decided to hit the transfer portal, as reported Thursday. Why did Daniels wait until now?
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On Thursday, the Arizona State Sun Devils saw three-year starting quarterback Jayden Daniels enter the transfer portal

Daniels, who arrived at ASU in 2019 as a true freshman, took over the Sun Devils offense immediately and displayed promise for a future that could very well hold Pac-12 title hopes thanks to his ability as a runner and a dynamic arm that could hit big plays down the field. 

In 2020, Daniels and Arizona State played only four games thanks to a season shortened by COVID. 

The 2021 season was when many expected Daniels to make the leap into the next stage of his development, yet ASU fans saw anything but that. Daniels turned the ball over far too often and struggled to consistently find open receivers. 

There was talk about Daniels potentially departing Arizona State following a loss in the Las Vegas Bowl, yet on Dec. 2, Daniels released a video announcing his return to the Sun Devils for another season under center. 

Weeks later, Sun Devils head coach Herm Edwards spoke about his confidence in Daniels, and even shared a laugh about him going anywhere else. 

“It’s kind of funny that he’s going to return — he was never leaving,” Edwards said. “So I don’t know why all of this became a story. We sat in our office and laughed.

“We wanted him to come back, and that helps when you have a quarterback of his stature. And I think when he looks at his season this year, obviously, he wants to do some things a little bit better and we have to help him do that.

"I like his attitude. I like his mindset right now. It’s always good when you have a veteran quarterback coming back. That’s always a good feeling for the coach.”

Now, Edwards probably isn't laughing in his office.

The Sun Devils reportedly passed up on transfer portal quarterback Spencer Rattler, the top quarterback prospect in his class and a native of Arizona, in favor of Daniels. 

The suddenly open competition at quarterback appears to be a battle between Daniels' second option in Trenton Bourgeut and Alabama transfer quarterback Paul Tyson, who was behind quarterback Bryce Young at Tuscaloosa. Finn Collins and Bennett Meredith are also options for ASU. 

The question of who Arizona State’s starting quarterback will be for the season opener will be answered in due time. 

For now, fans are asking Daniels: Why wait until now to transfer? 

Daniels has not spoken to anybody about his decision, and speculation will run rampant until reasons are officially drawn from him. 

However, there are a few logical reasons as to why Daniels may have pulled the trigger now.

Herm Edwards and Zak Hill discuss practice.
Paul Tyson
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Here's what a source close to Daniels told All Sun Devils:

"(Daniels) is not happy with how he’s being utilized to improve his draft grade."

We won't know for sure the clear reasons why Daniels opted to transfer out until we hear it from the man himself (and see where he ends up), yet the reasons stated above may be good indicators as to why Daniels chose now to depart Arizona State.