Adam Gase, Sam Darnold
AP Photo/Seth Wenig

New York Jets head coach Adam Gase reportedly preferred Baker Mayfield to Sam Darnold prior to the 2018 NFL Draft.

During the offseason of the 2018 NFL Draft, Adam Gase had a looming decision to make. Entering his third (and what would be his final) year as the Miami Dolphins head coach, the team had the No. 11 pick in the draft. Would they finally look to part ways with disappointing 2012 draft selection Ryan Tannehill and look for a new quarterback?

Miami ended up going with safety Minkah Fitzpatrick out of the University of Alabama. However, if they had their choice at quarterback in that draft, Gase reportedly would’ve gone with one of the ones not named Sam Darnold, his current New York Jets quarterback. Per Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News, after a private workout with Baker Mayfield, Gase was sold.

“It was the worst-kept secret in the Dolphins’ building,” Mehta writes. “Gase believed that Mayfield, who rolls into town with the Browns for a Monday night showdown against the Jets, was clearly better than Sam Darnold, according to sources familiar with the situation. In fact, people in the know revealed that Gase had more of an affinity for Josh Allen than Darnold too.”

Sources additionally told Mehta that Gase wasn’t impressed by Darnold’s tape from when he showcased his talent at the University of Southern California. Ultimately, Gase was “lukewarm” on the now-second-year pro.

Now, over a year later, and look what’s come around full circle. Gase is now in New York with Darnold, readying their team to face Mayfield and the Cleveland Browns on Monday.

We’ll get a look that night at which second-year quarterback is more prepared for this kind of test. Gase is surely hoping his initial assessment was wrong.

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