On April 25, 2019 the New York Giants used their 6th overall pick to draft quarterback Daniel Jones out of Duke University. The Giants received a lot of negative feedback for their draft choice, saying Jones wasn’t nearly as good as the other quarterbacks in the draft and that they made a mistake. However, when you look at all the other quarterbacks from the 2019 draft with the exception of Kyler Murray, the 1st overall pick, Daniel Jones is proving his value.
Dwayne Haskins Jr. was projected to be the second-best quarterback in the draft behind Murray, and fans were outraged when the team passed on him for Jones. Statistics don’t lie though, and Jones has been playing better football, comparatively. In their first four starts, Haskins has thrown for 498 yards, two touchdowns and five interceptions. Jones, on the other hand, had thrown for 904 yards, five touchdowns and six interceptions. While Jones did throw one more interception, he nearly doubled Haskins’ yards and had three more touchdowns, as well as a much harder matchups, especially against a New England defense that is playing at such an elite level.
A few other notable names that people expected to go higher than Jones in the draft were Will Grier, who was drafted by the Carolina Panthers and is currently serving as backup to Kyle Allen, and Drew Lock, who is currently serving as Joe Flacco’s backup on the Denver Broncos.
Giants wide receiver Darius Slayton certainly enjoys playing with Jones. Even during the tough loss to the New York Jets, Jones and Slayton connected on 10 passes for 121 yards and two scores.
“Tremendously. There is nothing like game experience,” said Slayton when asked about his chemistry growth with Jones. “Getting out there and playing against NFL competition, I think it’s grown a lot.”
Not only has their chemistry grown, Jones’ faith in Slayton has also grown tremendously.
“It’s exciting. Obviously, you want your quarterback to have a lot of faith in you as a receiver. I think that’s how you build a rapport with quarterbacks.” Slayton said about his reaction to Jones wanting to focus on getting him the ball more. “Every time the ball leaves their hand, making sure it gets completed. I think that helps them have confidence in us. We know they’re going to put the ball there, so at the end of the day, it’s on our end.”
Jones felt the same way about his receiver, Slayton.
“Yeah, I think so. He’s a really good player and you’re able to see all the different things he can do on the field.” said Jones, discussing the likelihood of more 100 yard games for Slayton. “So, I think he’ll continue to step up and make plays, and I’ve just got to make sure to get him the ball. I think he’s done a really good job so far.”
Not only did Jones come into the league as an underdog, he’s proved that he belongs by dethroning Eli Manning and taking the starting spot, as well as earning the trust and respect of his receivers, coaches, trainers and other teammates. Jones has what it takes to become something special in this league, and it may be sooner rather than later.
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