Jayden Daniels wants to be drafted to the “best situation.” Where would that be?

Jayden Daniels wants to be drafted to the “best situation.” Where would that be?
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INDIANAPOLIS — Jayden Daniels broke out a small smile each time he was asked about meeting with a particular team by the swarm of reporters standing below him. Standing at the podium, the former LSU quarterback said the Washington Commanders were “cool.” The Las Vegas Raiders? They were “great.” The New England Patriots? Living up to Tom Brady’s six Super Bowls with the franchise would be “tough,” but added it would be “dope” to try and replicate that success.

Daniels, not wanting to offend, said he’d be happy wherever.

“I just want to go to the best situation,” Daniels said.

Left unsaid: Not every situation is the best situation. In the NFL, teams can fail to properly provide young quarterbacks with enough support that dooms them from the start. And for a player like Daniels, the reigning Heisman Trophy winner, finding the right team that can tap into his electric skill set will be just as important.

So, what does the best situation look like for Daniels?

“The best situation is whoever believes in me,” Daniels said. “Obviously someone is going to take a chance on me and say this kid can change our organization, our franchise, be the face of the franchise. So … the main thing is just supporting me. And obviously if they call my name, they believe in supporting me.”

Throughout the last few months, Daniels has rocketed up draft boards. He’s widely regarded to be either the second- or third-best quarterback in his class, behind only USC’s Caleb Williams and possibly UNC’s Drake Maye. And, with so many teams needing a new signal caller, Daniels has been projected to be drafted by the Commanders (No. 2), the Patriots (No. 3) or by some club — perhaps the Raiders or the Atlanta Falcons — willing to pay the price to move up.

Each place would come with different, and likely challenging, circumstances.

The Commanders have had decades of quarterback instability — not ideal — but new leadership with coach Dan Quinn, general manager Adam Peters and owner Josh Harris means Daniels presents a fresh start for a team long plagued by (now former) owner Dan Snyder. The Commanders also have among the most salary cap space this offseason, meaning the team’s brass could get the roster in a much better place by the time the draft comes around in April.

The Patriots, too, are in a new era. Gone is Bill Belichick, and de-facto GM Eliot Wolf told reporters the organization would have less of a “hard ass” vibe going forward. But as of now, New England has a weak supporting cast on offense and its defense — still above-average last year — could take a step back with several starters pending free agents.

The Raiders, rumored to want to move up from No. 13, would present a reunion for Daniels. Before transferring to LSU in 2022, the 23-year-old spent three seasons at Arizona State — where Raiders coach Antonio Pierce and senior defensive assistant Marvin Lewis were on staff. Las Vegas has a few star players in wide receiver Davante Adams and pass rusher Maxx Crosby, but the franchise hasn’t won a playoff game since 2002.

The truth could be that no team that drafts Daniels would be an ideal landing spot. At least right away. Sure, teams such as the Atlanta Falcons and the Denver Broncos appear to be a quarterback away from contention — which could make Daniels the missing piece. But those teams have other needs, as well, and trading up for Daniels means there would be fewer resources to fill them.

Pointed out this, Daniels wasn’t fazed. He was, after all, at the NFL Scouting Combine, which meant he had enough talent to get him to this point.

“I walked my journey — I wouldn’t trade it for anything,” Daniels said. “I wouldn’t trade how I got here, how long it took or anything like that.”

That journey will continue in the NFL. Before then, Daniels must meet with teams and answer any concerns that they could have. As much as Daniels wants to land in the “best situation,” he also has to prove he would be the best situation for a team.

At the podium, Daniels was asked several times about his tendency to take off and run. With that, he said he could do a better job of taking fewer hits. “A little too greedy sometimes,” he said. Teams will likely have similar questions and whether his frame — he’s listed at 210 pounds — can hold up in the NFL.

But those concerns haven’t hurt his stock. Saints assistant general manager Jeff Ireland said Daniels was “very impressive” when interviewing with New Orleans, which still met with the quarterback out of due diligence despite holding the 14th pick.

“We’re going to do our homework on every single player, and that was the case with Jayden,” Ireland said. “We had a great interview with him.”

Odds are, Daniels will be long gone before then.

“If that’s the first pick, if that’s the 32nd pick, I’m just blessed overall just to be here,” Daniels said.

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About Mary Weyand 12323 Articles
Mary founded Scoop Tour with an aim to bring relevant and unaltered news to the general public with a specific view point for each story catered by the team. She is a proficient journalist who holds a reputable portfolio with proficiency in content analysis and research. With ample knowledge about the Automobile industry, she also contributes her knowledge for the Automobile section of the website.

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