The heavy lifting part of the roster-building season—free agency and the draft—is done. All that now remains is for this coaching staff to get these players on the field and begin molding what is an intriguing collection of talent into something that resembles a competitive football team.
With that said, it’s not too early to look at the various units and identify what questions need to be answered and determine how close they are to being answered based on personnel moves made.
Let’s go ahead and kick things off with the quarterback position.
Quarterbacks: Daniel Jones, Mike Glennon, Clayton Thorson, Joe Webb
The Biggest Question: Can Daniel Jones take that big step forward in Year 3?
The biggest—and only question at the quarterback position—has always been around Daniel Jones, the starting quarterback. At the end of last season, anyone and everyone associated with the front office and coaching staff threw their public support behind Jones despite logging a 5-9 record last year as a starter.
But that’s not all on Jones. He played behind a revolving door of offensive linemen that per PFF accounted for 86% of the pressure he faced (fifth-most among quarterbacks who took at least 50% of their team’s dropbacks), and who other than for a little more than five quarters of play, didn’t have his full slate of offensive targets.
Even when he had most of them available, they let him down almost to the point of epic proportions. Jones finished seventh among quarterbacks in dropped passes, and his 11 touchdown passes were the third-fewest in the league, behind Cam Newton of the Patriots and Sam Darnold, formerly with the Jets.
Now that Jones is in Year 2 of the same offense, the hope is he’ll be a lot more comfortable running it. But he’ll also have to continue working on his ball security—last year, he had 11 fumbles, losing six balls, and four of those fumbles (and two lost balls) bane in the final quarter of the season.
Hopefully, the coaches won’t rely as much on him as a rusher now that Saquon Barkley is on track to come back—quarterbacks who lead their team in rushing are seldom a good thing.
The bottom line is barring a rash of injuries, Jones has no excuses not to succeed in putting an end to the skepticism that he can be a long-term franchise quarterback capable of winning. If he doesn’t deliver the goods, the Giants, through their draft weekend wheeling and dealings, have set themselves up to go in any number of directions, including trading for a new quarterback next year if it comes to that.
But of course, the hope is they won’t have to wander into that territory as that would mean yet another re-start for a franchise that hasn’t seen the postseason since 2016.
Tomorrow: Running Backs