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Sam Darnold Trade Continues to Age Magnificently For Jets

Carolina sent a fifth-round pick to the Browns on Wednesday for Baker Mayfield. Last year, they traded three draft picks to the Jets for Sam Darnold.

The Sam Darnold trade was already aging well for the Jets.

Gang Green was able to get rid of a struggling quarterback, kick off a new era by opening the door for Zach Wilson while securing three draft picks (a second-round pick, fourth-rounder and sixth-rounder) in the process.

Seeing what the Panthers sent to the Browns for Baker Mayfield on Wednesday made that deal look even better for New York. 

Carolina traded a fifth-round pick to Cleveland for Mayfield. That's it. They're also picking up a significant portion of his salary for this season. The Jets are off the hook with Darnold financially. The USC product is set to make just under $19 million in 2022 with Carolina. 

Obviously every trade is different. Cleveland picking up some of Mayfield's salary is a big reason why the draft compensation was nothing more than a fifth-rounder. The situation in Cleveland with Deshaun Watson played a role as well. That doesn't change the way the Jets and their fan base will look back on the Darnold trade for years to come.

It's truly remarkable what general manager Joe Douglas was able to get in return for a quarterback that failed to live up to expectations in New York and seems destined to ride the bench with his new team going forward. 

New York still has a lot of work to do. Wilson hasn't proven that he's the answer under center yet and this is still a franchise with the longest postseason drought in the sport. That trade—along with the Jamal Adams-Seahawks deal—have aged like fine wine for Douglas and his staff, though.


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