April 19, 2021

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Why hasn’t Sam Darnold been traded? Zach Wilson’s physical holding up potential deal

2 min read

Let’s get physical.

There’s a ton of smoke surrounding the Jets and the No. 2 overall pick, with many considering BYU quarterback Zach Wilson all but a lock with that selection in the 2021 NFL Draft. If that’s fact, that leaves a question: Why is Sam Darnold still a Jet?

According to NFL Network’s Peter Schrager, there’s a simple reason why a Darnold deal hasn’t been struck yet: With no NFL Combine this year, Wilson still hasn’t undergone an objective, third-party physical, but that’s scheduled to change this week. 

MORE: Steve Young says Jets have ‘committed’ to Zach Wilson

“Zach Wilson will have an official medical review by doctors,” Schrager said on Monday’s “Good Morning Football.” “They’ll do the poking, they’ll do the prodding, we will know, and it’s by objective, completely non-conflicted NFL Draft combine doctors this week. If that comes out completely clean, and it’s like, all right, this guy’s good to go and he’s 100-percent healthy, then I think that really loosens the Jets up a bit. And they can say, ‘All right, now let’s start thinking about trading Sam Darnold.'”

Wilson has dealt with hand and labrum injuries in his career, and though his height measured in at a bit bigger than some expected at the NFL Combine, analysts point to his slight frame as a potential caution flag. Schrager says that the situation is similar to that of the Cardinals and quarterback Kyler Murray, in that the team did not want to trade Josh Rosen until they were certain that Murray was healthy and “the guy.”

Schrager also says that there’s a possibility that Darnold could be kept until the NFL Draft, a la Rosen.

All signs are pointing toward Wilson becoming the next Jets quarterback, and expect New York to trust the doctor’s orders to make that happen.

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