New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones is nowhere near having hit his prime.
But the third-year quarterback can sure take a big step toward that goal if he can shine in prime time this Monday when the Giants visit the defending Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers for a showdown on Monday Night Football.
It’s not that Jones, who is 0-7 in primetime games in his career, has been so bad that the Giants should start thinking about sitting him every time they draw a nationally televised primetime game.
But if Jones is to prove to the Giants and his critics that he’s definitely the next franchise quarterback, coming up small in big games played on a national stage won’t do.
Jones has appeared in four Monday night games in his 2+ year career and has gone 99 of 155(63.9 percent) for 967 yards (241.8 yards/game) with seven touchdowns to six interceptions while absorbing 14 sacks.
Jones has appeared in three games on Thursday nights, completing 57 of 93 pass attempts for 597 yards (199 yards/game), and has thrown four touchdowns to four interceptions while taking eight sacks.
Those aren’t impressive numbers, but to be fair, it’s not all on Jones, whose supporting cast has done their part to let him down.
This year alone, the Giants lost a Thursday night contest to the Washington Football Team in Week 2 thanks to a dropped interception and a fluky off-side penalty that gave the Football Team a second chance at the game-winning field goal.
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More recently, in Week 8, the Giants had a defensive penalty called against them in a game against Kansas City that nullified what should have been a game-sealing interception.
Predictably, Jones didn’t dwell on the lost primetime opportunities, noting, “We haven’t won enough games here recently, period, so you look at whatever the situation is. We’ve got to look at this game individually and preparing for that game.”
So might the Giants, who by the way are 0-2 this season under the lights and who historically have never fared well on Monday Night Football, where they hold an overall record of 23-44-1 and 16-31-1 on the road, look to change up their schedule or preparation to reverse their misfortunes?
Unlikely, according to head coach Joe Judge.
“We’re all kind of creatures of habit when it comes to football,” he said. “We have not changed anything specifically because of primetime games. I’ve been a part of that. It hasn’t always made the biggest difference to be honest with you. To me it’s we’ll get prepared and go out there and play.”
That’s fine with Jones, who sees this week’s game as the next one on the schedule, regardless of what time kickoff is.
“We’re preparing for this week,” he said. “Each game is different, each game is a different opportunity. We have to look at this game individually and prepare for that game.”
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