Sam Darnold is starting all over again with his new team, the Carolina Panthers. After three years in the NFL, Darnold knows what pressure is at this level. He definitely is also empathetic of the impact of hype on rookie quarterbacks like Trevor Lawrence, Zach Wilson, Trey Lance, Justin Fields, and Mac Jones, which is why he's got a warning for all these first-year quarterbacks, and that's to not to allow the high praises on their skills and talent influence their mental approach to the game.
Via David Newton of ESPN:
“For those guys, the biggest thing is to keep a level head through it all,’’ he said. “Keep grinding. Take it one day at a time. That’s all it is.”
Darnold was taken third overall in the 2018 NFL Draft by the New York Jets. As a young quarterback for a big-market team, the hype was certainly huge for Darnold. Although the Jets did not have a single winning season during Darnold's time with New York, it's fair to say that the jury is still out on him. In Carolina, he'll be hitting the reset button for a team that has also not had a winning season since 2017.
The former USC Trojans star was traded by the Jets to the Panthers in April 2021 in exchange for draft picks.