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Jets to start Joe Flacco at QB vs. Cardinals, Sam Darnold out with injury

Liz Roscher
·2-min read

The New York Jets are making a change in Week 5. Hold on, not so fast! Head coach Adam Gase isn’t going anywhere (yet). The Jets announced on Wednesday that backup quarterback Joe Flacco will start against the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday. Starting QB Sam Darnold will sit due to a shoulder injury.

Darnold injured his shoulder during the Jets’ Week 4 loss to the Denver Broncos. He was picked up and thrown to the ground by a linebacker, spraining his AC joint. He left the game for a few plays, but eventually returned. Though considering that he’s unable to start on Sunday due to that injury, maybe he shouldn’t have.

Flacco starting after neck injury recovery

Flacco, signed in the offseason, is serving as a backup quarterback for the first time. He was the starting quarterback for the Baltimore Ravens for 11 seasons, but lost his job to Lamar Jackson in 2018 after he missed time with a hip injury. A neck injury prematurely ended his 2019 season with the Denver Broncos, and he was released when the Broncos decided to move forward with young QB Drew Lock.

After missing the first three games of the season while recovering from that neck injury, Flacco was active in Week 4 and actually saw some game action. He came in when Darnold exited with his shoulder injury, going 2-for-2 with 16 yards.

Flacco’s performance has noticeably declined in recent years, but that’s exactly why he’s a backup now and not a starter. Gase told reporters on Wednesday that he hopes Darnold won’t miss much time (unlike last season when he had mononucleosis), so Flacco is definitely temporary. But honestly, with the Jets 0-4, it’s hard to see how Flacco could make the Jets much worse. No matter how bad Flacco may be, they can only lose one game on Sunday. Jets fans already know what that feels like.

EAST RUTHERFORD, NEW JERSEY - OCTOBER 01: Joe Flacco #5 of the New York Jets throws against the Denver Broncos during the first quarter at MetLife Stadium on October 01, 2020 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Joe Flacco of the New York Jets throws against the Denver Broncos during the first quarter at MetLife Stadium on Oct. 1, 2020 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

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