Sam Darnold selected third overall by New York Jets

The Jets have a new face of the franchise. Welcome to New York, Sam Darnold.

The Jets selected the USC passer with the third overall pick of the 2018 NFL Draft on Thursday night, a move the organization hopes will finally solve their forever riddle at the quarterback position. Darnold was the second QB off the board after the Browns selected Oklahoma's Baker Mayfield with the first overall pick.

Darnold joins a crowded quarterback room that includes Josh McCown, Teddy Bridgewater, Christian Hackenberg and Bryce Petty. Hackenberg and Petty will likely both get cut loose, while Bridgewater's survival will depend on the condition of his surgically repaired knee, according to NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport. It's logical -- but far from certain -- that Darnold, just 20, begins the season on the bench behind McCown.

Things could change quickly, however.

Mayfield was repeatedly connected to the Jets in the final weeks of the pre-draft process, but Cleveland surprised the football world by grabbing the former Heisman Trophy winner first overall. After the Giants selected running back Saquon Barkley at No. 2, Darnold fell right into New York's lap.

When the Jets traded with the Colts to move up to No. 3, it was hard to imagine Darnold would still be available. The Jets were so sure Darnold would be off the board that they didn't even schedule a pre-draft visit until late in the process.

But Darnold's now in the building, and he represents hope for a team and fanbase that has struggled to find an answer at quarterback for over four decades. Darnold is the franchise's highest QB draft pick since Joe Namath was selected first overall in 1965.

Jets fans hope it's the first of many comparisons between the two passers in the years to come.

Relive the sights and top moments from AT&T Stadium as all 32 NFL teams converge for the 2018 NFL Draft.

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