Is ongoing adulation placing too much pressure on Jayden Daniels?

The praise keeps coming for Jayden Daniels, but is it too much?
Jayden Daniels
Jayden Daniels / Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Jayden Daniels is a cool customer. The quarterback's taken everything in his stride since the Washington Commanders selected him at No. 2 overall in the 2024 NFL Draft. His early transition into a professional environment was seamless - something that's only raised expectations about what the signal-caller could accomplish throughout his career.

This level of expectancy hasn't been seen in Washington since Robert Griffin III took the league by storm as a rookie. The Commanders couldn't get things right at football's most critical position during Ron Rivera's indifferent four years as head coach. It's only early, but there is growing belief within the building that Daniels can solve this ongoing frustration for the next decade or more.

Commanders tipped for big things with Jayden Daniels under center

One doesn't have to look far around the media for adulation in Daniels' direction. Louis Riddick of ESPN was the latest to laud the former LSU star based on comments via USA Today Sports. He believes that if the Commanders do their part, the dual-threat weapon can propel this storied franchise into contention quickly.

"It’s hard not to get super excited about Jayden Daniels. You’ve seen some of the clips that the Commanders have put out there, in terms of some of the throws that he has made during OTAs, and it’s spectacular. And I’ve had correspondence with people down there who have said, ‘Look, very rarely does the ball hit the ground.’ He puts the ball exactly where it needs to be put. He can throw with touch, he can throw with velocity, he is a student of the game. And he is someone, most importantly, that the players will gravitate towards already. They want to be around him. They want to be accountable to him. They want to do better for him. He is going to take that town by storm as everything else around him grows with him. I have 100% confidence in that."

Louis Riddick via USA Today Sports

This was the case during pre-draft assessments and has only grown since. While this is an undoubted positive, it could also be placing too much pressure on the Heisman Trophy winner during his first campaign in the pros.

We live in an instant gratification age where fans demand success immediately. However, it's important to remember that almost every rookie quarterback goes through complications. Some more than others, but turmoil does arrive for those looking to make their way to the pinnacle of their profession.

C.J. Stroud was the exception to this rule last season. His production in a tremendous environment on the Houston Texans was historic. Not every first-year player under center is so lucky.

There will be testing times for Daniels. He's not going to have it all his way and will encounter hardship. It'll be a rollercoaster for the player. Coming out on the other side positively is critical to avoid any unnecessary complications.

Even if Daniels' rookie season is disastrous, it's not the end of the world. Staying the course, keeping the bigger picture in mind, and adding context is integral. Fortunately, the Commanders have a good support system in place led on the offensive side by Kliff Kingsbury.

Daniels is putting pressure on himself, too. He knows what a big responsibility has been placed on his young shoulders. He's working hard and going above the call of duty to fully prepare himself for the challenges that lie ahead. Something that's not going unnoticed by teammates, who've praised his work ethic almost as much as his on-field production.

All signs are pointing up for Daniels and the Commanders. Still, tempering expectations to alleviate pressure until further notice should be the preferred course of action.