Daniel Jones' Growing Pains Continue

No one said it would be easy to break in a rookie quarterback, but against the Arizona Cardinals, the Giants, in a 27-21 loss, continued to go backward.
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The rain fell at a steady pace throughout the afternoon at MetLife Stadium, where the Arizona Cardinals handed the New York Giants their third-straight loss. 

But the wt and sloppy conditions were no excuse for the sloppy play of rookie quarterback Daniel Jones, who continues to struggle with protecting the football.

Jones entered the game with six interceptions, having been sacked five times with two fumbles. 

This week, he threw one interception, was sacked eight times, and fumbled the ball three times, losing two of them, which the Cardinals turned into 14 points. 

Those miscues brought Jones' 2019 rookie year totals to 11 turnovers in five starts, contributing to the Giants' league-worst 18 turnovers.

“I think I’m making progress in some areas, and still need to improve a lot in others,” Jones said. 

“Obviously, taking care of the ball is a big thing, and has been. To not do that today is disappointing. I have to get better there.”

Head coach Pat Shurmur never wants to see a barrage of turnovers, such as what the Giants had this week. While the coach typically likes to wait until he looks at the film, he acknowledged there were a couple that were on the quarterback.

“Yeah, we had a couple in the pocket. Certainly, he’s got to secure the ball. Then the interception, I think he threw it late.”

Jones' biggest issue continues to be lacking a feel for when the pressure is closing in around him, which led to his three strip-sacks this week.

“Having the sense for the pressure, having the sense for the timing of the play, I think all of that stuff is what you’re trying always to develop and always be aware of in each situation," Jones said. 

"Yeah, I think to help a little bit, I have to do better with that.”

He also has a bad habit of dangling the ball away from his body when moving around in the pocket, which puts it at a higher risk of being knocked loose.

“They have some good pass rushers over there, and they did a good job,” Jones said. “But I need to do a better job of getting rid of the ball, getting through my reads and getting the ball out. But yeah, they deserve some credit.”

Jones also threw one interception and very nearly had a second one on an incomplete pass to Golden Tate when the receiver got away with a little shove against Patrick Peterson to prevent him from getting a jump on the ball, admitting that he forced the throw that led to an interception in the first quarter and never should have thrown the ball at all.  

Jones and the Giants did settle down some as the game wore on, at one point narrowing the Cardinals' lead to three.

“There was a sense of urgency,” Jones said. “We fought back, but you can’t afford to do that to yourself early. You can’t afford to put yourself in that hole, and it makes it harder on you. Yeah, there was an urgency, and I thought we fought. But it’s just hard to do when you put yourself down like that.”

But despite his struggles, Shurmur praised Jones, who finished with 22 completions in 35 attempts for 223 yards and one touchdown for not crumbling under pressure.

“He’s a tough son of a gun, and he’s fighting through it,” Shurmur said. “He made some good throws, too, today. He did a lot of really good things. We have to try to cut back on some of the mistakes.”

As the Giants recover from their third-straight loss and prepare to head to Detroit to face the Lions next week, Jones said that everyone is frustrated with the team’s performance.

“But I don’t think we’re discouraged at all,” Jones said. “We’ll be back to work tomorrow. We’ll be looking forward to the opportunity against Detroit. We’re frustrated, but kind of rightfully so. We all know we can play better, and we’re determined to play better. So, back to work tomorrow.”