Sam Darnold will definitely be out against the Browns on Monday night, as he continues to deal with mono. But, according to ESPN's Chris Mortensen, he doesn't think he'll be out too long.
Sources have told Mort that Darnold is saying he's "already feeling better," and he is aiming for a Week 5 return against the Eagles following the bye week.
That's all great to hear, but that's a bold statement there considering how serious of an illness mono is. SNY's Ralph Vacchiano has two doctors telling him that Week 5 would definitely be a stretch considering the recovery Darnold has to go through. Instead, those doctors believe a Week 7 return against the Patriots is a more likely outcome.
Head coach Adam Gase might love the fact that the early bye week is here now, but with Darnold having to gain back the weight he's losing along with the chance that he has an enlarged spleen, no one can know for sure when exactly he'll return.
In fact, Dr. Aaron E. Glatt -- chair of medicine at South Nassau Communities Hospital -- told SNY that Darnold could feel 100 percent, but still won't be able to play if an enlarge spleen is still present.
"The one major concern for a professional football player would be an enlarged spleen," Glatt said. "Unfortunately, a professional football player is exposed to tremendous contact and can be potentially hit very severely on their spleen. If the spleen is enlarged, as it often is in patients with mono, it is potentially at greater risk for rupture than a normal, healthy person who doesn't have an enlarged spleen."
So there are factors that Darnold and the Jets can't control, and he must simply let it all run its course. Though the Jets would absolutely love Darnold back sooner rather than later, they must be cautious with their quarterback of the future.
If he's ready for Week 5 and the tests are all positive to let him play, great. But it's definitely optimistic and only time will tell if Darnold can fulfill that goal. In the meantime, Trevor Siemian will take over and the Jets will keep their fingers crossed that when Darnold does return, he isn't tasked with digging the team out of a deep hole.