Jets officially begin the Sam Darnold era

It’s official.

Jets coach Todd Bowles named rookie Sam Darnold as his starting quarterback on Monday. Darnold will get the start next Monday in Detroit, becoming the youngest quarterback to open the season as a starter since the NFL/AFL merger.

Darnold beat out veterans Josh McCown and Teddy Bridgewater, who was traded to the Saints last week, for the job.

“It was close, obviously,” Bowles said. “Sam had a good preseason. We weren’t holding him back, but we weren’t rushing him at the same time. He still has some things to learn, but he’s poised in the pocket and the way he grasped the offense coming in right away and the guys gathered around him. He gives us a very good chance to win.”

The Jets drafted Darnold, out of USC, with the third-overall pick in April. Now he will try to become a franchise quarterback for an organization that has been searching for one since Joe Namath left town in 1976.

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