Daniel Jones

Giants Tried To Trade Up For DE Josh Allen

Giants GM Dave Gettleman‘s oft-scrutinized decision to select Duke QB Daniel Jones with the No. 6 overall pick in the 2019 draft is about to be put to the test, as Jones will make his first career start when Big Blue takes on the Buccaneers this afternoon. Although Jones’ performance in camp and the preseason helped to quiet the criticism a bit, it’s probably not an overstatement to say that Gettleman’s career with the Giants is riding on Jones’ right arm.

Many pundits expected the Giants to select Kentucky edge rusher Josh Allen with the No. 6 pick, and when Gettleman went with Jones, the Jaguars scooped Allen up one pick later. Several days after the draft, Gettleman described the decision to bypass Allen as “agonizing.” He said, “I agonized over that. I agonized. Before the draft, we discussed that thoroughly as a group — first last Friday, then again Wednesday. Obviously we had great regard for Josh Allen. But the one thing I have learned is you don’t fool around with a quarterback. If he’s your guy, you take him.”

In fact, Gettleman was so enamored with Allen that he tried to trade back up with the Jaguars to get him, as Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network reports (video link). The Giants were also armed with the No. 17 overall pick, so they may have had enough ammo to pull off such a deal, but Jacksonville wasn’t interested in passing up a talent like Allen.

Gettleman indicated post-draft that he knew of at least two teams that would have taken Jones before New York was back on the clock with the No. 17 selection, and Rapoport confirms that was the case (Twitter link). We heard earlier that the Giants also tried to trade up with Denver for the No. 10 overall selection, but they ultimately held onto the No. 17 pick and drafted DT Dexter Lawrence. Gettleman finally achieved a trade-up when he dealt pick nos. 37, 132, and 142 to Seattle in exchange for the No. 30 pick, which he used to draft CB Deandre Baker.

If Jones becomes a franchise signal-caller, this will all become little more than an interesting footnote. Allen, though, is living up to the hype thus far, having posted two sacks and seven pressures in the first two games of his career.

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Giants To Bench Eli Manning, Start Daniel Jones

It’s happening. On Monday morning, the Giants announced that they will bench quarterback Eli Manning in favor of rookie Daniel Jones for the upcoming week. 

Many expected the baton to be passed at some point in 2019, but few saw it happening this soon. After Manning’s latest rocky outing, coach Pat Shurmur & Co. have given him the hook.

He’s been our starter to this point, and I don’t want to talk about anything else moving forward from that standpoint,” Shurmur said earlier this week, when asked about Manning and Jones. “I’m not ready to discuss that.”

Manning has been the Giants’ starter for most of the last 16 seasons. In that span, he captured nearly every franchise record for QBs, not to mention two Super Bowl rings.

The Giants also briefly benched Manning in 2017, but they bailed on that quickly after fans revolted. This time around, fans might be a little bit more understanding – the Giants are 0-2 heading into this week’s game against the Bucs and they are years removed from their glory days.

The Giants’ selection of Jones in the Top 10 was a source of controversy, but the rookie rewards their confidence with a strong showing in the preseason. In exhibition action, he completed 85.3% of his passes, threw for 416 yards, plus two passing TDs against zero interceptions. He also saw some action down the stretch of the Giants’ Week 1 loss to the Cowboys, though his sole drive ended with a lost fumble.

Now, Jones will be tasked with manning the QB position while the Giants fight to turn things around in 2019.

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Pat Shurmur Non-Committal On Giants’ Week 3 Starting QB

The Eli Manning era may be on the verge of concluding in New York. After saying Sunday the prospect of Daniel Jones taking over at quarterback was not a conversation he was ready to have, Giants coach Pat Shurmur said (via Ralph Vacchiano of SNY) “it’s fair” to have it now.

He’s been our starter to this point. I’m not ready to talk about that,” Shurmur said of the Giants’ QB1 job Monday, via NFL.com’s Kimberly Jones (on Twitter).

He has not named his starter for Week 3 against the Buccaneers, inviting obvious speculation the 0-2 Giants will turn to Jones this week. The franchise’s previous plan was to start Manning while the team was still contending for the playoffs, but with the Giants opening the season with back-to-back losses by double digits, the organizational tone may be shifting.

Stripped of his top two wide receivers, Sterling Shepard and Golden Tate, Manning struggled against the Bills’ high-end defense. The Giants opened the season with a 35-17 loss to the Cowboys. New York’s defense, which did not get the Josh Allen reinforcement at edge defender Dave Gettleman strongly considered, ranks 29th in points and 28th in yards through two games.

Shurmur added he will certainly be “in the middle of” the team’s decision-making process on Manning, attempting to halt speculation this decision wouldn’t be his to make. Gettleman has said in the past Shurmur will make the call. Predecessor Ben McAdoo benched Manning for a December 2017 game and was fired, along with GM Jerry Reese. Manning has started every Giants game since, upping his career start total to 232 — seventh-most in NFL history by a quarterback.

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Giants Still Eyeing Daniel Jones Redshirt?

People inside the Giants organization acknowledge the perception of Daniel Jones has changed over the summer, with Ralph Vacchiano of SNY.tv noting the rookie’s rise has been “dizzying” to many staffers. The No. 6 overall pick has surprised most of the football community with his preseason readiness.

After a take-notice drive in his preseason debut, Jones completed 11 of 14 passes for 161 yards and a touchdown (while losing two fumbles) against the Bears on Friday. Eli Manning was 4-for-4 in limited duty. Despite Manning’s struggles in recent years and Jones’ August work, the hope remains the incumbent will play throughout 2019, per Vacchiano. The team does not believe Jones needs to be rushed.

Big Blue will not hold a quarterback competition in the near future. The belief still appears to be that Jones is not ready to usurp Manning, and Vacchiano adds the plan will be for the 16th-year starter to keep his job until at least the playoffs are out of reach. The Giants believe Manning can keep them in contention, so Dave Gettleman‘s hope to execute the “Kansas City model” — where Jones would play the Patrick Mahomes role to Manning’s Alex Smith — would be in play in this unlikely (per Las Vegas) scenario. John Mara said recently he hopes Jones “never sees the field” in 2019.

If the Giants fall out of contention, it should be expected their 22-year-old hopeful heir apparent will see the field. But for now, the organization does not look to be giving legitimate consideration to demoting its 38-year-old cornerstone.

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Giants, Daniel Jones Agree To Terms

The Giants will soon have their heir apparent quarterback under contract. They’ve agreed to terms with No. 6 overall pick Daniel Jones on his four-year rookie deal, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets. The Duke product is set to receive all of his signing bonus this year, Rapoport adds (on Twitter).

This completes the Giants’ 2019 draft class and trims the list of unsigned picks to four. Over the past three days, the Giants have come to terms with their final two holdouts — Jones and outside linebacker Oshane Ximines. Giants rookies begin work on Tuesday, and Jones will obviously be the centerpiece of those workouts. Veterans join practices Friday.

Jones, 22, worked as the Blue Devils’ starter for three seasons. The Giants saw enough to draft him at No. 6, rather than waiting until their No. 17 window opened. Having taken Jones over Dwayne Haskins and edge defender Josh Allen, Dave Gettleman has tethered himself to the scrutinized prospect.

Perhaps the most controversial pick of this year’s draft, Jones went off the board several picks before he was expected to. This prompted criticism directed at Gettleman, but the second-year Giants GM believes the former David Cutcliffe pupil will be the player to succeed Eli Manning. Jones impressed Giants brass this offseason, doing so to the point the team might only keep two quarterbacks on its active roster.

Nick Bosa (49ers), Quinnen Williams (Jets), Brian Burns (Panthers) and Deebo Samuel (49ers) are the final unsigned draft picks. Here is the full Giants draft class:

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Eli Manning Isn’t “Rushing Into Retirement”

Eli Manning completed his 15th NFL season, and the Giants proceeded to use their sixth-overall pick on Duke quarterback Daniel Jones. The writing would seemingly be on the wall for the veteran signal-caller, but Manning recently told Rod Walker of NOLA.com that he won’t be joining Peyton Manning in retirement anytime soon.

“I’m not rushing into retirement, and Peyton’s not telling me to rush into it,” Eli said. “I still love being around the guys and the teammates and playing this game. I’m going to play it for as long as I think I can hang with these guys.

“You take it year by year. I’ve been blessed going into my 16th year. That’s been a blessing in itself. I love what I’m doing. I love the work that goes into it. You never know when it’s going to be your last year or when it’s going to be the end for you, so you try to take advantage of the years you’re here and enjoy every moment.”

The two-time Super Bowl MVP had plenty of success through the first nine years of his career, but the Giants have struggled mightily since 2013. Over the past six seasons, Manning’s team has only finished above .500 once, and the Giants have combined for only eight wins over the past two years. Despite that, Manning is still proving he can be productive in his late 30s; he finished last season with a career-high completion percentage and a career-low interception rate.

The Giants have moved on from all of their Super Bowl mainstays, and the Giants are seemingly starting to embrace a youth movement. However, that sentiment doesn’t seem to include Manning, who said his younger teammates are helping him stay fresh.

“In the locker room, I feel their age,” Manning said. “At 8 o’clock at night, I don’t feel their age. I’m ready to go to bed and they are just getting started rocking and rolling. I can’t hang and do everything they can do off the field. But on the field, I still feel like I can still run with them and they keep me young.”

Manning is naturally a great mentor for Jones, and it makes sense for the Giants to ease their rookie quarterback into the lineup. However, if the veteran wants to continue playing into his 40s, there’s a good chance he’ll eventually have to move on from New York.

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Eli Manning On Daniel Jones, Potential QB Competition

There’s been growing speculation that the Giants’ quarterback situation is far from settled. Recently, the notion that rookie Daniel Jones could push Eli Manning for the starting job in training camp has been picking up steam. At the end of minicamp head coach Pat Shurmur’s comments seemed to suggest the door was open for Jones to start, although there hasn’t been much clarity. 

Speaking at his Manning Passing Academy, the longtime veteran told Rhett Lewis of NFL Network Friday that he isn’t worried. Here’s a look at some of the most notable topics from the interview, which will air in full later this evening.

On the prospect of competing for his job with Jones:

I mean no, I don’t feel like it’s a competition. I feel like I’ve got to do my job and I’ve got to compete every day and try to get better every day. That’s the way it’s been my whole life and that’s just the way I’ve always approached practice every day to improve, to earn my place on the team, to earn the respect of the teammates and do it each year

On mentoring Jones:

I’ve always been good with young quarterbacks, whoever’s been in there, trying to get them up to speed, teaching them about defenses or styles or what our defense plays. So I’m doing the same thing with Daniel and I’m going to be a good teammate, I’m going to do the best that I can do and help everybody on the Giants be successful.

On his own battle for the starting job in 2004, and how it relates to the situation now:

Definitely drawing back on that and I talk to Daniel and I see so many similarities in the situation and how things are going and just what he’s trying to do, his personality. He’s coming into this team, he’s just trying to learn the playbook, learn the names of everybody, got to earn the respect of his teammates. He’s got so much going on. He’s got the New York media, dealing with them; all of a sudden they’re saying things Day 1. … So just work hard, take your job seriously, but don’t take yourself too seriously — if you can do that — enjoy your teammates, listen to your coaches and we’re all in this together and we’ll get through it

On people pointing out similarities between him and Jones:

I see it. He’s a good kid, he’s quiet and he’s just trying to learn, get a good feel for when to let his personality come out. I was the same way. My rookie year I wasn’t going to say — Tiki Barber, Michael Strahan, you got these big personalities — I’m just going to keep my mouth shut, be on time, work my tail off in the weight room, ask my questions to the coach after the meeting is over and make sure I know what I’m doing before tell Tiki what his route is or I tell Amani Toomer, ‘Hey, I don’t think you did that right.’ You got to earn the respect. You got to get hit in the mouth a few times and get up … before you do a whole lot of talking.

 

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Latest On Giants’ QB Situation

Most of the attention on the Giants’ quarterbacks room this offseason has been focused upon Daniel Jones, the No. 6 overall pick in April’s draft, and Eli Manning, the 38-year-old two-time Super Bowl MVP. But as Paul Schwartz of the New York Post writes, the battle to be Big Blue’s third QB is expected to become quite heated once training camp opens next month.

Jones was able to quiet some of the negative chatter surrounding him with an impressive spring, and Schwartz says that if the Giants are convinced the Duke product will be able to step in for Manning whenever he’s called upon — and OC Mike Shula has already expressed that level of confidence in Jones — then the club may elect to keep just two signal-callers and send both Kyle Lauletta and Alex Tanney packing.

Between an October arrest and a poor professional debut, Lauletta, a 2018 fourth-round pick, has dug himself into a bit of a hole. Although Lauletta is just 24 and had enough upside to merit a mid-round selection from the Giants’ new regime, Schwartz says that the 31-year-old Tanney — who has played a total of one game in his professional career, which came in 2015 — is the current favorite to stick around. After all, New York signed Tanney to a two-year, $2.1MM contract with $775K guaranteed this offseason, which was a fairly telling show of faith.

Tanney has learned several offensive systems in his career and is a quick study, so the Giants see him as a better complement to Manning and Jones. Even though waiving Lauletta just one year after drafting him would not be a good look for the Giants’ front office or coaching staff, New York can’t worry about that just now.

And although it would be shocking if Jones were named the starter to open the season, there are already some rumblings that the Giants should do just that. If Jones builds on his spring performance with a strong training camp, Schwartz suggests the gap between the rookie and the 15-year year vet could close.

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Poll: Which Top 10 Pick Has The Highest Bust Potential?

The NFL Draft is just barely in the rear view mirror, which means that teams are full of hope for their young rookies. But, of course, the NFL Draft is largely a crapshoot, and not every player will realize their full potential. 

This year’s draft had talent, but lacked a true consensus on the top player. Many evaluators pegged defensive end Nick Bosa as the player with the highest ceiling in the 2019 class, but other saw Alabama’s Quinnen Williams as the “safest bet.” The 49ers pounced on Bosa with the No. 2 pick while the Jets (and former GM Mike Maccagnan) were delighted to land Williams at No. 3 overall.

Leading up to the draft, much of the attention was on Oklahoma quarterback (and one-time MLB hopeful) Kyler Murray. When Murray announced that he would ditch the Oakland A’s, his stock exploded – Murray was considered a borderline first-round prospect in the winter, but wound up as the Cardinals’ choice at No. 1 overall. Murray has the speed that teams crave at the QB position, but questions persist about his size and overall lack of experience as a full-time starter.

The Cardinals’ long flirtation with Murray brought us the expected result, but the Raiders gave us the real first shock of the draft when they tapped Clemson defensive end Clelin Ferrell at No. 4 overall. Not to be outdone, the Giants snagged Duke’s Daniel Jones at No. 6 overall. Heading into the draft, neither player was thought to be anywhere near Top 10 consideration, but Mike Mayock and Dave Gettleman were unwilling to trade down and risk losing out on their guys.

The domino effect created by those picks allowed the Bucs to grab inside linebacker Devin White (No. 5 overall), the Jaguars to land outside linebacker Josh Allen (No. 6), the Lions to snag top tight end T.J. Hockenson, the Bills to draft defensive tackle Ed Oliver (No. 9 overall), and the Steelers to finish out the Top 10 with linebacker Devin Bush. Most of those picks were warmly received, but nothing is certain in the draft.

Which Top 10 pick do you think has the highest bust potential? Click below to cast your vote (link for app users) and back up your choice in the comment section.

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Poll: Which Team’s New QB Will Have Best Season?

While this offseason did not bring quite the same level of quarterback movement 2018’s did, a handful of teams will deploy new starters. Draft choices, trade acquisitions and free agent signings will be given the keys to offenses that struggled last season.

The Broncos, Cardinals, Dolphins, Jaguars and Redskins made moves to fortify their quarterback jobs. Which team’s investment will work out best?

Denver will use a different starting quarterback for the third straight year. Joe Flacco is set to be the Broncos’ fourth starter since Peyton Manning‘s retirement. While his QBR figure (58.7) was better than any the former Ravens starter had posted since a quality 2014 season, Flacco still ranked 20th in that metric last season. Having never made a Pro Bowl and fresh off back-to-back years featuring injury trouble, with a back problem limiting him during the 2017 offseason and a hip injury beginning the Lamar Jackson era, the 34-year-old starter will try to revive his career in Denver. Flacco, though, is the most accomplished quarterback the Broncos have employed since Manning.

The other surefire veteran starter acquired this year, Foles will have his first chance to be a team’s unquestioned first-stringer since 2015. The 30-year-old flourished in his second Philadelphia stint, submitting an all-time postseason run in 2017 and helping the Eagles back to the playoffs last season. A 2013 Pro Bowler, Foles will take over a Jaguars team that does not possess the kind of aerial weaponry recent Eagles rosters did. Jacksonville is in line to have Marqise Lee back from a torn ACL, but the team’s wideouts and tight ends will place additional emphasis on Foles living up to his contract. With the Rams in 2015, Foles threw seven touchdown passes and 10 interceptions before being benched.

Kyler Murray represents the other locked-in starter added this offseason. The electric one-year Oklahoma starter accomplished about as much as a college passer can in a single season, turning in Division I-FBS’ second-ever 4,000-1,000 season en route to Heisman Trophy honors. Working with Kliff Kingsbury, Larry Fitzgerald and a host of young wide receivers, Murray is the centerpiece of one of the most daring experiments an NFL team has attempted.

The Cardinals turned the keys over to a sub-.500 college coach and a 5-foot-10 signal-caller — the first sub-6-foot passer to be chosen in Round 1. Arizona trotted out the league’s worst scoring and total offense last season, however, and sported a skeleton-crew offensive line by year’s end. The Cards added new starters Marcus Gilbert and J.R. Sweezy up front. Due to the lack of precedent behind this move, it is hard to tell how Murray will fare. But the unique talent has opened as Las Vegas’ offensive rookie of the year favorite.

Washington and Miami have not committed to a starting quarterback yet, but it is fairly safe to project Dwayne Haskins and Josh Rosen will see extensive time. While Case Keenum and Ryan Fitzpatrick could log starts, with the latter possibly even on track to do so, the Redskins have liked what their first-round pick has done so far and the Dolphins will need to see Rosen in games to help determine if they will consider a first-round QB in 2020. On the heels of a 50-touchdown pass season, the Ohio State product sits second in offensive rookie of the year odds. Although only eight passers have won this award since 1957, seven such instances have occurred since 2004.

Both Daniel Jones and Drew Lock could factor into their respective teams’ mixes later in the season. Of the 13 first-round QBs taken over the past four years, only Patrick Mahomes and Paxton Lynch were not promoted to the starting role as rookies. (Though, Eli Manning is not your typical stopgap.) Lock was projected by most as a first-rounder, and Flacco ceded his role to the No. 32 overall pick last year. So the 12th-year veteran’s grip on Denver’s job should be considered tenuous.

Vote in PFR’s latest poll and weigh in with your thoughts in the comments section.

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