Daniel Jones has played well enough in ‘prove-it’ year to earn more trust down Giants’ stretch – The Denver Post


An hour after Giants co-owners John Mara and Steve Tisch took in the Giants’ Wednesday practice, Daniel Jones said he believes head coach Brian Daboll trusts the Giants’ passing offense.

“I do, yeah, I do,” Jones said. “I think at points in the year we’ve leaned on it, and we’ll continue to work to improve it.”

Jones cited two reasons for why he’s in no position to demand more opportunities to make plays with his arm: 1. “a lot of those decisions are certainly above my head” and 2. “we’ve been effective running the ball all year.”

But there’s a problem: only one of those statements is true.

The Giants averaged 173.4 rush yards per game during their 6-1 start, but only averaging 116.4 per game on the ground in its 1-3-1 skid these last five.

The offensive line had one of its worst games of the season against Washington’s formidable defensive front in Sunday’s 20-20 tie at MetLife Stadium, especially the interior where left guard Nick Gates struggled badly.

It’s not clear if left guard Ben Bredeson (knee), who is designated for return from injured reserve and practicing, will be able to return Sunday against the Philadelphia Eagles (11-1) or the following week against Washington. The Giants need him.

It didn’t appear his practice workload increased much on Wednesday. So it may be more important for the Giants (7-4-1) to have him available for their Week 15 trip to Washington (7-5-1) that will essentially decide a playoff berth.

Jones deserves more now than ever to have the full trust of Daboll, though, especially since the Giants haven’t recently proven it can rely on Saquon Barkley and the running game.

Jones has played extremely well this season in his “prove-it” year.

In Jalen Hurts’ prove-it year as the Eagles’ quarterback, GM Howie Roseman traded for star wide receiver A.J. Brown. He has paired Brown with dynamic wideout DeVonta Smith, stud tight end Dallas Goedert (currently injured), speedster wideout Quez Watkins, and running backs Miles Sanders, Kenneth Gainwell and Boston Scott behind one of the NFL’s best offensive lines.

Jones is working with much less running the Giants’ offense, but he still has helped carry a threadbare roster to seven wins and counting with solid decision making and a dual-threat attack. He even completed 80% of his passes last week against the Commanders.

He has carried the ball 91 times for 522 yards and four TDs to supplement 2,365 passing yards and 11 TD passes. And most importantly, he has committed only seven turnovers in the Giants’ 12 games, even while already doubling his career-high carries for a season.

He is averaging a career-low .583 turnovers per game after averaging 1.769 turnovers per game as a rookie, 1.14 per game in 2020 and 1.1 last year.

One of Daboll’s concerns has to be that three of Jones’ seven turnovers have happened in the last three games: two interceptions against the Lions and a lost fumble against Washington.

Plus, the Eagles’ defense has forced a league-high 23 turnovers. Wide receiver Darius Slayton said Eagles corners Darius Slay and James Bradberry, the ex-Giant, represent the best corner tandem the Giants have faced this year.

“This year, so far?” Slayton said. “Yeah.”

Daboll can’t continue to coach timidly, though, as he did in last week’s tie against Washington. And if the Giants are really giving Jones every opportunity to earn this job for the long-term, they will allow him to let it rip.


Did not participate: CB Adoree Jackson (knee), DL Leonard Williams (neck), LG Josh Ezeudu (neck), LG Shane Lemieux (toe), RG Mark Glowinski (rest), DT Dexter Lawrence (rest), S Julian Love (rest). Limited: CB Nick McCloud (hamstring), CB Darnay Holmes (shoulder), WR Richie James (knee), DL Henry Mondeaux (knee). Full: WR Kenny Golladay (illness).

Notes: Wednesday was the first time Tisch has been seen at Giants practice in a long time … Daboll said safety Xavier McKinney won’t return with his broken left hand against the Eagles Sunday, but the coach did say McKinney was at the doctors’ office Wednesday getting checked. And it was possible that he would be getting the pins out of his hand at that appointment. If and when McKinney has the pins removed, it’s possible he eventually could return with a club over his hand and play. He hasn’t played since Week 8 … Jackson told the Daily News last week that his knee’s recovery was going well and was status quo with his original 4-to-6 week timetable. If that holds true, it would mean the earliest he could return is Christmas Eve in Minnesota … Love, Lawrence and Glowinski all received veteran rest days due to their workloads, though Glowinski did play through a back injury last Sunday. The team did not list that on Wednesday’s injury report, however, and said his DNP was “not injury related.” … Corner Rodarius Williams said Wednesday that he is eager to make more plays when the opportunity comes knocking again, like he did with his Thanksgiving interception against the Dallas Cowboys. He feels he worked hard to get healthy, overcome adversity and contribute. So he’s excited for his next chance to do it. He said he and the Giants are good after his public tweet lamenting his DNP against Washington. And it’s worth noting that Williams is familiar with Hurts, having played against him at Oklahoma State in 2019 in Hurts’ lone Oklahoma season.


Did not participate: LB Shaun Bradley (hamstring). Limited: WR Watkins (shoulder), LB Kyzir White (ankle).



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