Year 3 is a pivotal time for any young player, particularly at the quarterback position.
The spotlight surrounding 2019 first-round pick Daniel Jones was already set to intensify for this very reason, only now the glare is noticeably brighter following the Giants’ busy offseason.
From former Pro Bowlers to field-stretching speedsters, New York added a number of weapons that could spark a turnaround as soon as 2021. Most would say this revamped unit will only go as far as its QB1 takes it; from Jones’ perspective, his continued development is only one part of the equation.
“It’s on all of us. It’s on all 11 guys to do their job every play,” he said Thursday when asked if he feels added pressure. “That’s how we’re going to make big plays, is everyone doing their job. It’s not on any one person more than the other. It’s about everyone executing together as a unit. That’s how we’re going to create explosive plays, be a productive offense.”
Diplomatic statements about teamwork aside, Jones is in prime position to solidify his spot as franchise QB should he exhibit the leaps in leadership and play-making expected of him by coach Joe Judge and team brass.
With the arrival of weapons such as Kenny Golladay , Kyle Rudolph , John Ross and rookie Kadarius Toney to an offense that still includes Sterling Shepard , Evan Engram , Darius Slayton and a returning Saquon Barkley, there’s no reason why Jones and Giants shouldn’t excel, health withstanding.
How Judge and offensive coordinator Jason Garrett go about devising a game plan that emphasizes Jones’ strengths while best utilizing the talents of the players around him will be fascinating to see. The 23-year-old’s involvement in these discussions will also go a long way in mapping out the type of year he and the team hope to have.
“I think there’s a constant dialogue between coach Garrett and coach Judge, [QB] coach [Jerry] Schuplinski, all the coaches and myself, I’m certainly involved in that and how I see things, what I’m comfortable with, what plays I like and that’s a constant conversation and dialogue,” Jones said. “They’re the coaches and I’m the player, I certainly understand that but they ask my input and when they do, I certainly provide that. So, yeah, there’s a constant conversation and back-and-forth there in terms of how I see it and what I like and stuff like that.”
After finishing 6-10 last season, the Giants showed signs of a competent bunch that needed a few roster tweaks, which they’ve made. Yes, team chemistry will obviously play a huge role but there’s no way to understate the importance Jones plays to the team’s chances in 2021 and beyond.
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