Should teams quarantine their quarterbacks from the rest of the team as a risk management strategy? Jets coach Adam Gase says the franchise has thought about that “quite a bit.”
“Once you start sticking traveling in their in the regular season, we do have to keep talking through these types of things and figuring out the best things for us to do,” coach Gase said (via Ralph Vacchiano of SNY).
It seems likely that COVID-19 outbreaks are going to happen. How the NFL handles these instances remains up in the air, though isolating the QB could very well be a prudent strategy.
Sam Darnold enters year-3 as the starter in New York and the team brought in Joe Flacco as insurance. Flacco is currently recovering from neck surgery, though his status for the 2020 season doesn’t appear to be in jeopardy. The former Super Bowl MVP is expected to be a healthy backup to Darnold.
Darnold has missed three games in both of his seasons in the NFL. In 2018, it was a foot sprain. In 2019, it was a string of bizarre injuries. He missed three games with mono and was banged up on other occasions, nursing a removed toenail and a sprained thumb after returning to the field.
Darnold was 7-6 in his 13 starts last season but the club lost each of the three games he didn’t suit up for. In the event that the Jets need a competent arm, Flacco should serve better than Trevor Siemian and Luke Falk, both of whom were not brought back. Behind Darnold and Flacco, the team has David Fales and rookie James Morgan.
Will quarantining the QB work to prevent an absence by Darnold or top guys on other teams? Who knows but for the Jets, Flacco’s presence should give New York fans more comfort than isolating Darnold, provided there is football this fall.
The Jets entered last season with a consensus O/U of 7.5 but failed to reach the over by just one game. Perhaps a better backup QB would have snagged one of the there contests Darnold missed.