Miller a big fan of Darnold

Stamford Advocate (Sunday) - - Nfl | Auto Racing -

EAST RUTHER­FORD, N.J. — Von Miller ac­knowl­edges he’s no draft guru and is far from any kind of ex­pert when it comes to quar­ter­backs. Well, ex­cept for sack­ing them, of course.

But the Den­ver Bron­cos star line­backer knew there was some­thing spe­cial about Sam Darnold long be­fore the New York Jets made him the No. 3 over­all pick.

“I don’t know noth­ing about draft­ing a quar­ter­back or any­thing like that, but I thought he was the No. 1 pick, for sure,” Miller said. “I thought he was the best of­fen­sive player in the draft.”

The Jets sure thought so, even if the teams ahead of them took guys on of­fense ahead of Darnold. Cleve­land made quar­ter­back Baker May­field the No. 1 over­all pick, while the Gi­ants went with run­ning back Saquon Barkley with the next se­lec­tion.

The Jets pounced on Darnold when their turn came up, and Miller can’t blame them.

“Baker May­field was the No. 1 pick, and right­fully so,” Miller said. “But in my opin­ion, watch­ing ev­ery­thing, from a pass rusher’s point of view, I just felt like (Darnold) was the No. 1 pick in the draft. He wasn’t the No. 1 pick, but he’s def­i­nitely play­ing like it.”

Well, not quite. But Miller will get a chance for an up­close eval­u­a­tion Sun­day when the Bron­cos (2-2) travel to MetLife Sta­dium to take on Darnold’s Jets (1-3).

Darnold had a ter­rific NFL de­but with two touch­down throws in New York’s win at De­troit, but has strug­gled a bit in the three games since — all losses — along with the rest of the Jets’ of­fense. He has just two TD passes in that span and four in­ter­cep­tions, although he didn’t toss one last Sun­day at Jack­sonville.

“As a team, I feel like we are re­ally close, and for me per­son­ally I feel like I’m just on the edge,” Darnold said. “I’ve just got to con­tinue to find com­ple­tions, hit my guys deep when they’re there. It’ll come, it’s just a tim­ing thing. It’s go­ing to click one of these games, I know it is.”

This might be a tough week to get things go­ing, though. Es­pe­cially while fac­ing a de­fense led by Miller, who has four sacks and two forced fum­bles this sea­son.

And, Darnold re­al­izes Miller will be look­ing to add to those to­tals — de­spite all the high praise.

“It’s pretty cool that he said it,” Darnold said. “It’s def­i­nitely very hum­bling, very flat­ter­ing, but at the same time, we’re go­ing up against him. … I’m just go­ing to go out there and we’re go­ing to han­dle him the way that we need to and go about our busi­ness that way.”

Phe­lan M. Ebenhack / As­so­ci­ated Press

Jets quar­ter­back Sam Darnold rolls out to throw a pass dur­ing the first half against the Jack­sonville Jaguars on Sept. 30 in Jack­sonville, Fla.

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