Giants Goal: Protect the Franchise
Quarterback Daniel Jones would never say as much, but his body has taken a beating throughout his seven starts for the New York Giants.
Over the past seven games, Jones, who has 11 touchdowns and eight interceptions for 1,676 total yards, has been sacked 26 times so far this season, which is tied for fourth in the league as the most sacks suffered by a quarterback.
Sacks aside, Jones is tied with Jared Goff of the Rams for the league lead in having been hit as he released the ball (9).
Thus far, Jones has been able to bounce back from the weekly beatings thanks in part to his durability and his youthfulness.
“I feel good,” Jones said. “Obviously, it’s a short week this week, so it’s important to make sure we are recovered and feeling good for the game. But yeah, I feel good.”
The Giants would like for that to be the case moving forward, and to that end, they’d like to see the rookie take fewer beatings.
But not all the hits Jones has absorbed are a result of the offensive line’s leaky pass protection. In some instances, Jones has been hit when running with the ball.
“I could do a better job sliding and getting down or getting out of bounds at times,” Jones admitted. “That’s something that I’ll continue to work on.”
Head coach Pat Shurmur also knows that Jones, especially when he takes off running, needs to decide to slide sooner, so that he does not take as many hard hits after a running play.
The rookie has 29 rushing attempts on the season and two touchdowns. His 188 rushing yards are ranked second on the team behind Saquon Barkley.
“He’s getting better at it where he didn’t take hits,” Shurmur said. “Then there was the one (Monday night) where he fumbled where that’s just a matter of a competitive guy who was well aware where the sticks were and was trying to get the first down. So that’s what you balance.”
Jones is so competitive that he doesn’t think twice about throwing a block if it means springing a teammate at the second level or beyond.
That’s what he did on a reverse against the Cowboys Monday night in which he laid a lick on Xavier Woods.
“I’ve got to do a better job of getting my pads down and make a better block,” Jones said.
“In that situation, I’m going to try to block him, but I could definitely do a better job of protecting myself or making a better block.”
Shurmur doesn’t want to see Jones play a soft game, but he realizes that there has to be a better balance, something he continues to work with Jones on achieving every day.
“I think what you see by watching him play is he’s a young player that is fighting and scratching,” Shurmur said.
“We ran a reverse, he got out there and got a block. I’d rather he didn’t do that, but you know what it is. It flashes, and he’s a competitor, and he’s getting involved.
“In terms of his toughness and competitiveness, I think we’re seeing what we knew about him when we drafted him. Each week, he’s trying to do everything he can to help us win.”
He can start by doing a better job to cut down on the number of hits he takes.
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