3. The Age, Future
Yeah, that’s right, Sam Darnold is 20 freaking years old. The kid can’t even legally drink yet. (I’m sure he’s never taken a sip of alcohol in his life due to the fact it’s illegal, so … 21 is on the horizon, young Sam.)
Twenty-nine (Cousins) versus 20 (Darnold) is a major determining factor en route to how the depth chart is built. If it’s Cousins at the QB spot, flexibility must factor in. Sacrifice must remain in the back of the mind pertaining to other spots on the depth chart.
Since it’s Darnold in the fold, a fresh, longer process can be taken in filling out every crucial hole for the future feels and remains endless.
2. The Higher Ceiling
We’ve watched Kirk Cousins for six seasons now. If you think he’s suddenly going to live up to the best quarterback in the league (based on his pay), you’re that eternal optimist who also believes Darnold will take home the 2018 NFL MVP.
We’ve watched him. We know what he is. We understand his ceiling.
He’s a solid QB. He’s, perhaps, a top 10 quarterback in the NFL.
Darnold, on the other hand, is a blank slate. His ceiling is unknown and filled with giddy enthusiasm. The kid could turn out to be Peyton Manning or Ben Roethlisberger. He is that good.