Jets QB Sam Darnold has mononucleosis and will not play against the Browns on Monday Night Football, head coach Adam Gase revealed on Thursday. Trevor Siemian will get the start under center in his place.
Darnold was sent home from practice on Wednesday, with Gase saying it was for an illness. But, after learning about the diagnosis, Gase actually went over to Darnold's home to give him the news. He was joined by offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains and associate head trainer Dave Zuffelato.
And as one would expect, Darnold wasn't keen on the news.
"Not well," Gase said on how Darnold took the news. "He wasn't really happy about it."
"I just wanted to make sure it was delivered right and I figured I could be the bearer of bad news on this one."
Gase is expecting Darnold to be out several weeks -- not just this game against Cleveland. He mentioned that Darnold has already been losing some weight, and since he can't be around the team, he is already seeing what he can do in the meantime to try to maintain his body for when he's able to return.
Sam Darnold's mono diagnosis is a devastating blow to a Jets team relying on a strong sophomore campaign from their young quarterback.- Ralph Vacchiano (@RVacchianoSNY) September 12, 2019
When that will be, no one knows. But Gase is happy that the Jets have that early Week 4 bye week this season.
"He's still going through some of these tests to kinda see where's he's at with all this," Gase said.
This is obviously a huge blow to the Jets, but Gase has confidence in Siemian to get the job done. The last time he saw a start was with the Broncos in 2017, where he had 10 starts in 11 games that season. In 2016, he had 14 starts with an 8-6 record. Overall, he's 13-11 over his career starts.
Gase called the Jets' offense "flexible," so Siemian stepping in won't change anything whatsoever. He got all the first-team reps in Wednesday's practice and that will now continue leading up to Monday night.
"Nothing really crazy for us," he said about the team's gameplan changing. "The way we have it built, it's really flexible to where Trevor's good."