10 NFL QBs with the most to prove in 2021, from Carson Wentz to Tua Tagovailoa

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2020 stats:12 games/12 starts (2-10 record), 2,208 yards, nine touchdowns, 15 turnovers (11 interceptions, four fumbles),72.7 passer rating

Whether it was poor roster construction, Adam Gase and his weird eyes, a lack of weapons or just a bad situation in general in New York, Sam Darnold never lived up to his No. 3 overall pick hype (and the unfair label as “savior”)while with the Jets.

Regardless of all that, though, Darnold’s red-flag issues coming out of college persisted at the NFL level: Poor turnovers, mechanic and footwork problems and an over-reliance on Hero Ball all doomed his tenure in New York, leading to GM Joe Douglas to cut bait after just three years.

(No matter how you feel aboutGase or the Jets, no head coach is teaching his QB to throw into triple coverage.)

Trading his Gotham Green for Panther blue this offseason,Darnold is entering Year 4 of his NFL career, and he’s getting a brand-new, fresh start with Matt Rhule and Joe Brady.

The Panthers traded a 2022 second- and a 2021 fourth-round pick for Darnold, and they also passed on the opportunity to draft a sliding Justin Fields with the No. 8 overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. That’s all not exactly a light investment for a guy who’s going to have to be paid in the coming years, if he’s any good.

The Panthers are going to have to find out very fast if Darnold is going to be their quarterback beyond 2021.Given a second lease on his football life, Darnold is going to have to go from bottom-of-the-barrel passerto serviceable starter at minimum. That’lltake a very big — and potentially historic — leap.

If he doesn’t make it, he’ll be the latest in a line of USC QB castoffs.

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