Aaron Donald will be chasing Sam Darnold around the field Sunday, and the Jets are hoping to somehow keep the Los Angeles Rams’ defensive star away from their quarterback as much as possible.
While the Jets have been asked all week about facing the NFL’s sack leader and the No. 1-ranked defense in the league, here’s a sampling of “Donald on Darnold” from his Zoom call Thursday with the media.
“Obviously, they’re not playing how they want to play, but I think he’s a good quarterback,” Donald said. “He’s really mobile. He can move, make things happen with his feet and get out of trouble. It looks like he’s strong. I’ve seen a couple times when it looked like he was about to get sacked, but he was able to break out and make something happen.
“He’s a solid quarterback, so we’ve been studying that and understanding that plays aren’t going to come easy. We’ve got to earn them. We’ve just got to do our job. He’s a good quarterback. They’ve got some good players around him, young players.”
Darnold, who grew up in Southern California and played collegiately at USC, returned the compliments, even if his words probably were an understatement.
“Yeah, Aaron Donald is a good player,” Darnold said. “He definitely pops out on tape, especially it seems like whenever a play needs to be made, he is always there making it. So it will be fun playing against him.”
The Jets placed defensive lineman Folorunso Fatukasi on the reserve/COVID-19 list because of close contact with someone outside the organization. Because he must remain on the list for five days before being eligible to return, he will miss Sunday’s game.
Adam Gase said it’s “a really good possibility” that sidelined linebacker Jordan Jenkins (shoulder) will have to undergo surgery. … Gase added there’s “a good chance” kicker Sam Ficken will be active, and “hopefully we’ll get [running back La’Mical Perine] back for the last two games.”
Cornerback Bless Austin, who returned last week after missing four games with a neck injury, on whether the Jets’ 0-13 record has been frustrating: “It’s been tough. To say ‘frustrating,’ there’s a lot of crazy things going on in this world. I don’t want to say frustrating — that’s a pretty strong word — but it’s been tough to deal with the losing.”