Daniel Jones

Giants, QB Daniel Jones Did Not Engage In Extension Talks

The Giants and quarterback Daniel Jones did not engage in extension discussions prior to GM Joe Schoen‘s self-imposed Week 10 deadline to talk contract, as Jordan Raanan of ESPN.com writes. So, as expected, the contract situations of Jones and running back Saquon Barkley — both of whom are eligible for unrestricted free agency in March — will be atop Schoen’s agenda this offseason.

Interestingly, Schoen did engage in extension negotiations with Barkley and defensive back Julian Love during New York’s Week 9 bye, and while those conversations did not lead to a new deal for either player, it is notable that Giants brass did not at least check in with Jones’ camp. That is especially true in light of September reports that Schoen and first-year head coach Brian Daboll harbored “major concerns” about Jones’ viability as a long-term option.

Since those earlier reports, New York has gone 6-4, and Jones has performed much better under Daboll than he did during his first three years in the league. Still, as Raanan acknowledges, there is a difference between being a legitimate NFL starter and being a franchise cornerstone, and it is unclear if Jones’ improved play in 2022 has been enough to convince the team that he is worthy of a lengthy accord.

Indeed, Jones has not played especially well over the last two games, both of which resulted in losses that have threatened to sour a pleasantly-surprising season. On the other hand, his 58.5 QBR — supported by a 10:4 TD:INT ratio and 64.6% completion percentage — is the 10th-best mark in the NFL. He has already set career-highs with 451 rushing yards and four rushing scores, and he has compiled those numbers on a strong 5.7 YPC rate. He has also led four fourth-quarter comebacks this season, and the team’s dearth of receiving talent has made his work more impressive.

One NFC general manager tells Raanan that the Giants’ best option would be to re-sign Jones this offseason, but a different NFC exec says he does not see Jones as a franchise player. Yet another NFC exec sees Jones as a bridge option and believes a one-year, $15MM-$20MM deal would make the most sense for the Giants. However, former GM Mike Tannenbaum thinks Jones is an “ascending player” who can reasonably expect a multi-year deal worth ~$25MM/year, especially given the supply-and-demand dynamics of the QB market that benefit even flawed signal-callers.

Whether Schoen is willing to pay Jones that type of money remains to be seen, and his decision may be impacted (to some degree) on Barkley’s situation. Former NFL agent Joel Corry projects the franchise tag for RBs to come in at roughly $10.1MM, which is a better number than the ~$12MM projections that have been floated and which is much more appealing than the projected ~$31.5MM franchise tag figure for QBs (via Dan Duggan of The Athletic on Twitter).

That said, the Giants are reportedly willing to pony up a top-of-the-market contract for Barkley, and Ryan Dunleavy of the New York Post says talks between player and team were encouraging. Perhaps a multi-year contract for Barkley — which will allow the team to smooth out his 2023 cap hit — coupled with a tag for Jones will be the most satisfactory result for all parties involved.

Giants Eyeing Saquon Barkley Extension; Franchise Tag In Play

Saquon Barkley‘s comeback season features the former Offensive Rookie of the Year sitting second in rushing yards as the Giants hit their bye week. The injury-prone running back has worked his way back onto the extension radar, and the Giants’ new regime appears onboard with a second Barkley contract.

After listening on Barkley trade interest this offseason, Giants GM Joe Schoen has spoken to the fifth-year running back about an extension.

Saquon and I have a great relationship. I told him I’d like him to be here, and I think he’s in the same boat,” Schoen said during an appearance on WFAN’s Tiki & Tierney. “We’ll see if we can work something out here at some point.

He’s a guy we’re gonna do our due diligence on. We’d like to keep him around here. We can get into the contract extension talks … decide a value for the player, where we see him and why, and then knowing we have the franchise tag as a tool in the toolbox.”

A Barkley extension emerged as a possibility last year, when the regime that drafted him was still at the controls, but died down after the Penn State product went down with an early-season ankle injury. Barkley did not establish much momentum in the weeks that followed, though just about no Giant did in a miserable finish to the 2021 campaign, and no extension buzz surfaced this offseason. Barkley, 25, was more closely connected to being moved.

We explored the prospect of a Barkley extension in September, but now that the former No. 2 overall pick has submitted more evidence of being back to his pre-ACL-tear version, the floor for an extension looks to have risen. Barkley sits second behind Nick Chubb in rushing yards (779) and ranks behind only Tyreek Hill in scrimmage yards (986). Then again, the running back market has not moved in a while. Christian McCaffrey, Alvin Kamara and Ezekiel Elliott still reside atop this position group, AAV-wise, on deals from 2020 (CMC, Kamara) and 2019 (Zeke). Those big-money extensions — at or north of $15MM per year — have generated mixed returns as well.

Barkley’s value to the Giants, a stalled running back market, a crowded backfield class headed toward free agency and the salary cap disparity between 2020 ($198.2MM) and 2023 (perhaps north of $220MM) complicate a potential deal. So does Barkley’s injury history, which hovers over the rest of the dynamic back’s season as well. But if Schoen is correct in noting Barkley wants to stay in New York as well, the process could be easier.

If the Giants were to tag Barkley, it would not be too expensive. Last year, the running back tag came in at just $9.57MM. After battling through cap trouble this offseason, Big Blue’s new regime is projected to have at least $60MM in funds next year. Barkley is playing on a $7.23MM fifth-year option, but unlike most running backs, he came into the league with a monster payday. With the fifth-year option added to his bank account, Barkley will move beyond $38MM in career earnings at season’s end.

Daniel Jones‘ status could conceivably interfere with a Barkley tag, however. While both the franchise and transition tags are available to teams, only one can be used per offseason. Jones has been mentioned as a candidate for the seldom-used transition tag, which locks in a lesser amount but gives other teams more flexibility to negotiate with the player. Schoen said (via The Athletic’s Dan Duggan) the fourth-year quarterback is still being evaluated. A QB transition tag, projected at roughly $28MM, would be much more expensive than a running back franchise tag.

Jones’ improved play, with a bottom-tier receiving corps, further stands to complicate the Giants’ 2023 offseason. While Schoen is open to negotiating with players this week, Duggan adds, he does not wish to do so once the Giants’ bye wraps. That would table the Barkley and Jones matters to January. Two players who looked to be on the way out with the organization are suddenly back in the long-term picture, injecting more intrigue into the surprising team’s status.

Giants QB Daniel Jones To Play In Week 5

OCTOBER 7: Jones will play against the Packers in London. The Giants took the fourth-year quarterback off their injury report. The Giants ruled out Taylor, however. Webb will back up Jones.

OCTOBER 6: The Giants will be without four starters this weekend. Wide receivers Kenny Golladay and Kadarius Toney, outside linebacker Azeez Ojulari, and cornerback Cor’Dale Flott did not make the flight to London for Sunday’s game against the Packers.

According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport (on Twitter), Golladay suffered a sprained MCL during Sunday’s win over the Bears. It sounds like this would be a temporary absence for the veteran wideout, although the Giants won’t have any extra time following their trip across the Atlantic. Despite earning his first start of the season on Sunday, Golladay still isn’t a major factor in the Giants’ offense. Through four appearances, he’s hauled in two catches on six targets.

Toney has been dealing with a hamstring injury that’s forced him to miss the past two games. There was some optimism that he could return this weekend after he was a limited participant on Wednesday, but he didn’t practice today.

“He’s done everything we’ve asked,” offensive coordinator Mike Kafka said today (via ESPN’s Jordan Raanan). “He’s practiced hard when he’s practicing. It’s unfortunate, but he’s one of those guys that does everything we asked and is working his tail off in the training room and in the meeting rooms. He does a great job with that.”

There is some good news on the injury front. Per Aaron Wilson of ProFootballNetwork.com, Daniel Jones is “trending in the right direction” for this weekend. The QB has been a limited participant this week while nursing an ankle injury, but he made the flight to London and is expected to give it a go. With backup Tyrod Taylor likely sidelined with a concussion, the Giants will probably promote Davis Webb from their practice squad for some extra depth.

Latest On Giants QBs Daniel Jones, Tyrod Taylor

The Giants exited yesterday’s game against the Bears with a victory, but they used both of their dressed quarterbacks (and then some) in the contest. The prognosis on their starting signal-caller appears to be the source of some disagreement. 

NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport tweets that Daniel Jones is day-to-day with the ankle injury he suffered yesterday. He adds that there is optimism Jones will be available for New York’s Week 5 game against the Packers in London. Ryan Dunleavy of the New York Post reports exactly the opposite, however (Twitter link). More tests will be needed during the week to make a final determination.

The 25-year-old has gotten off to a similar start in 2022 to the rest of his career in terms of completion percentage and QB rating. He has managed only a 3:2 touchdown-to-interception ratio, though, and has already taken 14 sacks. His passing totals have dropped with respect to both yards per attempt and per game, though he is averaging over 48 yards per contest on the ground.

Jones entered the 2022 campaign with plenty of question marks surrounding his future. After the Giants made the expected move of declining his fifth-year option, the Duke alum is scheduled to hit free agency at the end of the year. His first season under new head coach Brian Daboll has begun with an unexpected amount of team success, as the Giants are 3-1, though Jones himself has yet to make the substantive progress likely necessary to land a deal to stay in the Big Apple in March.

If Jones is unable to play on Sunday, the team’s QB situation could get complicated. Veteran backup Tyrod Taylor suffered a concussion not long after relieving Jones, leaving his Week 5 availability very much in doubt. New concussion protocols are expected to be in place by then, leading to the sense that teams around the league will be particularly cautious.

At a minimum, Davis Webb is likely to be elevated from the practice squad before the game. The 27-year-old made a single appearance with Daboll and the Bills last year, and could have remained in Buffalo as a QBs coach. Instead, he will receive plenty of attention this week, depending on the status of Jones’ ankle.

Injury Notes: Taylor, Burks, Kamara, Gallup

Giants backup quarterback Tyrod Taylor exited today’s game with a concussion, according to Paul Schwartz of the New York Post. Taylor was put into action when starting quarterback Daniel Jones was sidelined with an ankle injury in the fourth quarter of today’s win over the Bears.

Taylor had a rough showing, throwing an interception on his first possession under center, and, in the very next possession, sustaining a helmet-to-helmet hit from Bears cornerback Kyler Gordon that would remove him from the game. With both quarterbacks hobbled, the Giants were temporarily forced to utilize their emergency quarterback, starting running back Saquon Barkley.

Following Taylor’s exit, the Giants ran a couple of plays with Barkley leading a wildcat-style offense, with Jones serving as a decoy out wide. Jones would eventually return behind center, solely to hand the ball off to Barkley for the remainder of the game.

Jones claimed after the game that he was OK, so there’s a chance that he will be able to return for New York’s Week 5 matchup with the Packers in London. If Taylor, who will now go through the league’s soon-changing concussion protocol, is unable to play, the Giants have quarterback Davis Webb on the practice squad.

Here are a few more injury notes from Week 4 of the NFL season, starting with the loss of an AFC South rookie:

  • Titans rookie wide receiver Treylon Burks left today’s contest with the Colts almost immediately after sustaining a foot injury in the fourth quarter. “Almost” because, perhaps being unaware of the injury protocol in the NFL, Burks got stuck on the field for one more play while injured before he went to the ground and was able to leave the game. Burks eventually found his way to the sideline and was carted off to the locker room, according to Adam Schefter of ESPN. The first-round pick out of Arkansas was reportedly seen in a walking boot and on crutches after the game, according to Terry McCormick of TitanInsider.com, but the severity of his injury has yet to be reported. So far this season, Burks and trade-acquisition Robert Woods have led the team in receiving, but neither has extremely eye-popping numbers through three weeks of play. Any absence by Burks would mean more snaps for Nick Westbrook-Ikhine and Kyle Philips on offense.
  • Saints running back Alvin Kamara was officially ruled out early in the morning for most Americans before the team’s London matchup versus the Vikings. Kamara, who’s been dealing with rib issues, is reportedly “looking to get healthy for (the) long haul,” according to Nick Underhill of NewOrleans.football. In his absence, the Saints split carries between Mark Ingram and practice squad elevation Latavius Murray.
  • After tearing his ACL late in the 2021 season and having surgery in February, Cowboys wide receiver Michael Gallup made his season debut today against the Commanders. Gallup played sparingly but proved useful while available. On three targets, Gallup caught two balls for 24 yards and a touchdown.

Latest On Giants, QB Daniel Jones

Off to a 1-0 start after upsetting the Titans, the Giants have begun Brian Daboll‘s tenure better than Pat Shurmur‘s or Joe Judge‘s started. Daniel Jones finished 17-for-21, with much of his yardage (188) coming on a 65-yard TD toss to Sterling Shepard. But the fourth-year quarterback likely still has plenty of work to do to earn the trust of the Giants’ new decision-makers.

Upon taking over in New York, Daboll and GM Joe Schoen harbored “major concerns” about Jones’ viability as a long-term option, Jason La Canfora of the Washington Post notes.

Although the new Giants brass being “far from sold” on Jones is not too surprising, given the team’s decision to pass on its starting quarterback’s $22.4MM fifth-year option in May. Jones, who is now with his fourth NFL play-caller (though, he made it only one game with interim play-caller Freddie Kitchens last season), is on track for free agency in 2023. The oft-criticized passer could revitalize his career with a strong season under Daboll, but the fifth-year option era’s short history works against Jones being a long-term Giant.

In the option era (since 2014, when 2011 draftees’ options could be exercised or declined), no team has declined a QB’s fifth-year option and then circled back via an extension or re-signing. Jake Locker, Blaine Gabbert, Christian Ponder, E.J. Manuel, Teddy Bridgewater and Mitch Trubisky saw their options declined. None of this passer lot played beyond four seasons with his original NFL team. The 49ers passed on Gabbert’s option after acquiring him via trade in 2014; Brandon Weeden, Paxton Lynch and Josh Rosen were off their first-round contracts before their option decisions arrived. Bridgewater was on his way to earning a Vikings extension, but his severe 2016 knee injury intervened. Jones did suffer a neck injury that required offseason surgery, but after back-to-back down years, the Duke product has never been tracking toward a Giants extension.

The Giants should be expected to give Jones a long look, despite this regime not drafting him. Ownership backed Jones as its starter in March, and John Mara said earlier this offseason the Giants had “done everything possible to screw up” Jones’ development. But Daboll is high on backup Tyrod Taylor, per La Canfora, who adds that some around the league believe the first-year HC would not hesitate to bench Jones for Taylor if it helps this year’s team. It is too early for such talk, and a Jones benching would effectively signal the Giants are back in the quarterback market for 2023. They would join several other teams, including some that have two first-round picks, in that mix.

Daniel Jones Underwent Offseason Neck Surgery

Daniel Jones faces plenty of performance-related questions heading into the 2022 campaign, but his health remains a talking point as well. While he is on track to start Week 1 without issue, it was recently revealed that he went under the knife this spring. 

The Giants quarterback underwent a “non-football-related procedure” on his neck, reports Ryan Dunleavy of the New York Post. The surgery was done early in the offseason, Dunleavy adds, and has left Jones with a visible scar at the base of his Adam’s Apple.

The 25-year-old missed the final six contests of the 2021 season due to a neck injury. The fact that this procedure was deemed ‘non-football-related’ points to a separate issue altogether, though it is nevertheless a potentially concerning development given how much is riding on Jones being fully healthy and more productive this year.

To no surprise, the Giants declined Jones’ fifth-year option, leaving the strong possibility that he hits free agency at the end of the 2022 season. A significant improvement from the Duke alum – who has a 12-25 record, career completion percentage of 62.8% and only one more scrimmage touchdown scored (50) than total giveaways (49) – would be needed to avoid the team moving on in advance of a draft considered far better than this year’s with respect to signal-callers.

New York also has veteran Tyrod Taylor available should Jones miss significant time again. Ownership has publicly backed the latter as the unquestioned starter for at least one more year, giving him an opportunity under new head coach Brian Daboll to elevate his play closer to the level which was expected of him when he was drafted sixth overall. From a health standpoint at a minimum, his ability to play the team’s preseason opener without issue is an encouraging sign.

“It was all good” Jones said after the game against the Patriots. “[I] didn’t have any kind of issues at all.”

Giants Notes: McKinney, Gono, Cunningham, Bonuses

Xavier McKinney enjoyed a career year in his second NFL season, leading the Giants with five interceptions. The former second-rounder figures to remain a bright spot on the team, but some aspects of the defense under ex-DC Patrick Graham were the subject of remarks the young safety recently made.

In conversation with Steve Serby of the New York Post, McKinney noted a marked difference in practices since the arrival of Graham’s replacement, Don Martindale, particularly in the level of communication between players and coaches. “We didn’t really have much of that these last two years, and that was a big problem,” he said. “That came with obviously a lot of like everything didn’t look organized. Even defensively there were times we played good, but sometimes the communication wasn’t there, and that’s because everybody was kind of on different… it was a lot of different things going on.

“[Under Martindale] we don’t have to worry about making a mistake on a third down or a fourth down or something like that… and I think that’s what we’ve missed obviously the past two years… I think everybody could tell you on the defensive side everybody was so afraid of being the one to make the mistake instead of just actually going out there and playing.”

The Giants ranked 21st and 23rd, respectively, last season in terms of yards and points allowed per game last season – something McKinney will look to help the team improve on moving forward, and which could be made easier with a new voice on the sidelines. Graham is now the Raiders’ DC.

Here are some other notes concerning Big Blue:

  • Earlier this week, the Giants placed offensive tackle Matt Gono on the exempt/left squad list due to an undisclosed injury. It turns out that the neck injury which caused that absence is likely to end his career (Twitter link via ESPN’s Jordan Raanan). The 26-year-old missed all of last season after having neck surgery, so the return of symptoms in practice would make it challenging for him to make his way back onto the field. Scheduled to be the Giants’ swing tackle, his absence could lead to a larger role for 2020 third-rounder Matt Peart, or require the team to find a depth option in free agency.
  • Staying on the theme of offensive lineman, Korey Cunningham will try to earn a roster spot at his natural position, per Dan Duggan of The Athletic (subscription required). The previous coaching staff experimented with a move to tight end for the six-foot-six, 305-pounder, but the new regime led by Brian Daboll will keep him as an o-linemen. The absence of Gono could help him secure a place at the backend of the roster.
  • Earlier this week, Duggan also relayed (on Twitter) that quarterback Daniel Jones and left tackle Andrew Thomas received roster bonuses of $3.2MM and $2.7MM, respectively. 2022 is seen as a make-or-break year for Jones, whose fifth-year option was declined, whereas Thomas could make that same decision easier on the team with a strong performance this campaign.

Injury Notes: Beathard, Glasgow, Jones, Texans, Bengals

The Jaguars number-two QB went down with an injury yesterday. C.J. Beathard was carted off the field during OTAs, per NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero (on Twitter). According to the reporter, Beathard suffered a groin injury, and an impending MRI will reveal the extent of the injury.

The former third-round pick spent the first four years of his career with the 49ers. Beathard went 2-10 as a starter, completing 58.6 percent of his passes for 3,469 yards, 18 touchdowns, and 13 interceptions. He signed a two-year, $5MM deal with the Jaguars last offseason, and he got into two games as Trevor Lawrence‘s backup, completing his pair of pass attempts.

If Beathard is forced to miss an extended amount of time, the Jaguars will likely turn to Jake Luton or rookie EJ Perry as Lawrence’s primary backup.

More injury news from around the NFL…

  • Broncos lineman Graham Glasgow broke his ankle last November, but the veteran is back at practice and is competing to regain his starting spot. “I’m no stranger to competition,’’ Glasgow said (via Mike Klis of 9News in Denver). “I’ve competed in the past and I’ve competed for starting jobs in the past. This whole offseason, I’ve been competing with myself to get better in my rehab stuff. If I’m healthy, I’m just going to go out there and do what I can and do what I do. We’ll see what comes out of that.” The 29-year-old guard/center has started 78 of his 82 career games, but Klis notes that Quinn Meinerz and/0r Netane Muti could push him for a starting gig.
  • Daniel Jones is apparently over his neck injury. Giants head coach Brian Daboll told reporters that if the season started today, then the Giants starting QB would be fully cleared to play (per Dan Duggan of The Athletic on Twitter). After going 4-7 in his 11 starts, Jones missed the final six games of the 2021 campaign with a neck injury. Despite his struggles, the former sixth-overall pick is expected to keep his starting gig in 2022, although the organization did bring in veteran Tyrod Taylor as competition.
  • Texans wideout DaeSean Hamilton is set to have knee surgery tomorrow, reports Aaron Wilson of ProFootballNetwork.com (on Twitter). The receiver suffered the injury during a non-contact drill, but he didn’t tear his ACL and is expected to make a full recovery at some point during the regular season. Hamilton was a fourth-round pick by the Broncos in 2018, and he only missed a pair of games through his first three seasons. He missed the entire 2021 season with a torn ACL, and he caught on with the Texans back in March. The 27-year-old has 81 receptions in 46 games.
  • Bengals defensive tackle Tyler Shelvin suffered a wrist injury that will shut him down for the rest of the offseason program, per the team’s website. Coach Zac Taylor told reporters that the former fourth-round pick avoided a serious injury, but the player still needed to go under the knife to repair the ailment. Shelvin got into three games as a rookie, collecting four tackles.

2023 NFL Fifth-Year Option Results

Monday marked the deadline for NFL clubs to officially pick up their options on 2019 first-rounders. Fifth-year option seasons are no longer just guaranteed for injury — they’re now fully guaranteed, which makes these decisions a little tougher for teams.

Nineteen players had their options exercised, a tick up from 14 last year. Here’s the full rundown:

1. QB Kyler Murray, Cardinals – Exercised ($29.7MM)
2. DE Nick Bosa, 49ers: Exercised ($17.9MM)
3. DE Quinnen Williams, Jets: Exercised ($11.5MM)
4. DE Clelin Ferrell, Raiders: Declined ($11.5MM)
5. LB Devin White, Buccaneers: Exercised ($11.7MM)
6. QB Daniel Jones, Giants: Declined ($22.4MM)
7. DE Josh Allen, Jaguars: Exercised ($11.5MM)
8. TE T.J. Hockenson, Lions: Exercised ($9.4MM)
9. DT Ed Oliver, Bills: Exercised ($10.8MM)
10. LB Devin Bush, Steelers: Declined ($10.9MM)
11. OT Jonah Williams, Bengals: Exercised ($12.6MM)
12. LB Rashan Gary, Packers: Exercised ($10.9MM)
13. DT Christian Wilkins, Dolphins: Exercised ($10.8MM)
14. G Chris Lindstrom, Falcons: Exercised ($13.2MM)
15. QB Dwayne Haskins:
16. DE Brian Burns, Panthers: Exercised ($16MM)
17. DT Dexter Lawrence, Giants: Exercised ($10.8MM)
18. C Garrett Bradbury, Vikings: Declined ($13.2MM)
19. DT Jeffery Simmons, Titans: Exercised ($10.8MM)
20. TE Noah Fant, Seahawks: Exercised ($6.9MM; originally drafted by Broncos)
21. S Darnell Savage, Packers: Exercised ($7.9MM)
22. OT Andre Dillard, Eagles: Declined ($12.6MM)
23. OT Tytus Howard, Texans: Exercised ($13.2MM)
24. RB Josh Jacobs, Raiders: Declined ($8MM)
25. WR Marquise Brown, Cardinals: ($13.4MM; originally drafted by Ravens)
26. DE Montez Sweat, Commanders: Exercised ($11.5MM)
27. S Johnathan Abram, Raiders: Declined ($7.9MM)
28. DE Jerry Tillery, Chargers: Declined ($11.5MM)
29. DE L.J. Collier, Seahawks: Declined ($11.5MM)
30. CB Deandre Baker — N/A (released by Giants)
31. OT Kaleb McGary, Falcons: Declined ($13.2MM)
32. WR N’Keal Harry, Patriots: Declined ($12.4MM)