Jets rookie quarterback Sam Darnold "campaigned" to start for New York on Sunday against Tennessee, but sat on the bench as head coach Todd Bowles chose to start veteran Josh McCown, according to The MMQB's Albert Breer.
Darnold has been out with a foot injury since Nov. 4, but was reportedly healthy and ready to play on Sunday. The USC quarterback did not dress in New York's 26-22 defeat.
"I’m told Jets QB Sam Darnold campaigned to play on Sunday in Nashville, and even showed himself to be healthy during early warmups," Breer wrote in the Monday Afternoon Quarterback. "And when I say that, I mean 100%. Coach Todd Bowles made the call, in the end, to start Josh McCown and not dress Darnold."
McCown completed 17 of 30 attempts for 128 yards against the Titans. He did not throw a touchdown pass.
Darnold has struggled in his rookie season, cooling off after a solid start. He threw seven interceptions and completed just 47% of his passes in Weeks 7-9.
The Jets are 3–9, last in the AFC East.