New York Jets coach Adam Gase said Tuesday that he was disappointed with ESPN airing Sam Darnold's comments to coaches that he was "seeing ghosts" during the first half of Monday's blowout loss to the New England Patriots.
The quote from Darnold came after his third turnover -- one of his five from a dismal performance by the second-year QB in prime time -- and quickly became a national storyline following the game.
"Yeah, I think we're gonna be looking into that pretty hard," Gase said. "That was one of those things that was really disappointing to hear about after the game. I don't know if I've ever seen that, where somebody that was mic'd up was basically, you know a comment like that was allowed to be aired. It bothers me, it bothers the organization."
Darnold was mic'd up for Monday Night Football allowing his sideline comments to reach a national audience, and Gase said this situation will cause him to re-evaluate his team's participation in such productions in future games.
"Monday night game, you know somebody's usually mic'd up," Gase said. "I know once a year I have to do the same thing. It's just kinda part of the deal. Obviously, you're never anticipating something like that happening. The fact that it did, just gives us pause to really cooperate anymore, because I don't really know how we can allow our franchise quarterback to be put out there like that."
NFL Network's Mike Garafolo explained Tuesday on NFL NOW that ESPN relies on NFL Films for its mic'd up segments, and an NFL Films producer will send interesting clips to the broadcast for airing. The Jets did not see Darnold's "ghosts" comment before it aired on ESPN, per Garafolo.
Darnold was under duress throughout Monday's game as the Patriots continually sent extra defenders at the Jets quarterback, forcing him into errant passes and mistakes as New England jumped out to an early lead that snowballed into a disastrous night for Darnold. As the pressure intensified, Darnold routinely lofted passes off his back foot regardless of the presence of a Pats defender, which led to his admission of "seeing ghosts."
"When I talk to the coaches, I just got to be straight up and, for me, I just got to see the field a lot better; that's kind of what that means," Darnold said after the game of "ghosts" comment. "It was a rough night out there and obviously I got to be better and learn from the mistakes but we will get better."
Darnold, playing in his second game back from mono, went 11-of-32 passing for a career-low 86 yards in addition to his five turnovers.