As has been the case for the majority of the past decade, the New York Giants finished the 2020 season with a sub-.500 record. Yet, their efforts over the latter end of the year show a team that appears to be on the up-and-up. Over the final eight games, New York rallied off a respectable 5-3 record. This, despite being without starting quarterback Daniel Jones for an excess of two games over that span.
While outsiders have readily questioned Jones as the answer under center ever since being selected with the No. 6 overall pick in the 2019 NFL Draft, the Giants’ organization has remained bullish of their belief in the young signal-caller.
Head coach Joe Judge, general manager Dave Gettleman and Co-Owner John Mara have all, at one time or another, backed Jones as their guy this offseason. Still, that hasn’t stopped critics from trying to replace Jones, whether with a projected trade (Deshaun Watson, Marcus Mariota, etc.) or an early-round draft pick.
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Giants View Daniel Jones as a Future ‘Upper-Echelon Quarterback’
Daniel Jones doubters, you can put all those hypothetical deals to rest, because the team reportedly “fully committed” to their 23-year-old quarterback, per ESPN’s Jordan Raanan. In fact, the organization believes that Jones not only has what it takes to be a legitimate starter in the league, but rather a “successful upper-echelon quarterback.”
Jones is their guy, multiple team and league sources reiterated to ESPN over the past few weeks. And while the organization’s brass, from the top down, believes Jones has what it takes to be a successful upper-echelon quarterback, they are knowingly taking this leap of faith with their fingers crossed after inconsistent results during his first two professional seasons.
On one hand, you could look at these comments and say, ‘well what else are they going to say?’ This would be a fair observation, as teams are fully expected to back their young quarterback. On the other hand, you have to acknowledge that for a player so commonly doubted in NFL circles, it is respectable, and frankly telling, that not one glimmer of skepticism has leaked out of the Giants organization when it comes to their belief in Jones.
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Do Jones’ Talents Warrant New York’s Unwavering Support?
It’s easy to pick apart Jones’ game. He’s far from a finished product and shows some serious flaws in terms of decision-making and ball security.
With that said, he also flaunts the abilities that every team is looking for from a young signal-caller in today’s modern NFL. While he may not possess a Patrick Mahomes-esque arm, his arm talent is viable enough to make every throw asked of him. Furthermore, his athleticism as a runner (as absurd as it may sound to some) is arguably third to only Lamar Jackson and Kyler Murray across the league.
On top of that, Jones actually took a step forward in crucial aspects of his game this past season. While the box score may have taken a hit, Jones actually reduced his number of turnover-worthy plays from 31 in 2019 to 17 in 2020, per Pro Football Focus.
Do all these things cement Jones as the team’s long-term answer under center? Absolutely not, but it’s something to work with. In reality, if the Giants believe in their quarterback as much as they relay to the media, it’s time for them to supply him with worthy talent, both at the skill positions and on the offensive line, to better help fast track his development.
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