Sunday was not Sam Darnold’s day.
Against the Patriots, the rookie quarterback was sacked four times, lost a fumble, and threw for his second-lowest passing yards total (167) of the season. Darnold, who was selected third overall in the 2018 NFL Draft, couldn’t manage to find the zone in the air or on the ground, as the Jets’ scoring was limited to a 40-yard field goal by Jason Myers in the first quarter.
“It’s embarrassing,” Darnold said after the game. “It’s embarrassing to go out here and lose 38 to 3. I’m really proud of the way we fought [and] the way we competed. It just wasn’t enough.”
The 21-year-old out of USC missed the first Patriots-Jets game of the season due to a foot injury but played 100 percent of New York’s offensive snaps Sunday at Gillette Stadium. He called Foxborough “a great atmosphere.”
“Patriots fans are obviously awesome,” he said. “They bring the juice. When we’re on offense, it’s tough to hear and all that, tough to communicate. But at the same time, at the beginning of the game, in the first half, and even early on in the second half, it was a fun atmosphere [and] really fun to play in. I’m looking forward to coming back here next year.”
In 13 starts, Darnold finished his rookie season with 2,865 passing yards, 17 touchdowns, and a league-high 15 interceptions. He said he will wait to evaluate the year as a whole until Tuesday. Coach Todd Bowles, who is not expected to return next season, said Darnold had “some ups and downs, obviously.”
“It’s been a learning process for him,” Bowles said. “Hopefully, that helps him going forward.”