Is Giants quarterback Daniel Jones a franchise quarterback? RSP contributor J. Moyer breaks down the rookie tape of Daniel Jones and delivers his verdict in this game of True or False?
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Daniel Jones took over for New York Giants stalwart Eli Manning week three of 2019 and led Giants fans on a gridiron version of Mr. Toad’s Wild ride. Jones posted 5 games with more than 300 yards passing and threw 4 or more touchdowns in 3 separate games.
The flip side? He went 3-9 as a starter, failed to eclipse 250 yards in 5 games, tossed 12 interceptions, and fumbled 18 times (leading the NFL by a whopping SIX fumbles. In only 12 games.)
Despite his inconsistencies and some glaring struggles, Danny Dimes is widely considered to have had a successful rookie campaign, with an arrow firmly pointed up. So, can he be a franchise QB?
Let’s start with his strengths. Jones is big, tall, and athletic. He throws with excellent velocity and can make accurate throws across his body and off-platform. He is clearly well-studied and effectively identifies primary reads based on pre-snap looks. When his primary targets are open, and he doesn’t get blindside pressure, he can deliver some very impressive strikes.
But Jones’ inconsistencies include a few major flaws that are difficult fixes. Prior to the 2019 draft, I pointed out his struggles processing defenders efficiently after the snap, forcing him to fall behind the pace of the play and miss open throwing windows. During his rookie year, he showed similar deficiencies, often failing to recognize defenders’ leverage and frequently missing crucial throwing windows.
Jones’ propensity for coughing up the ball traces back to deficient pocket awareness for blindside pressure – he does not possess that intuitive internal clock that effective pocket manipulators like Tom Brady use to frustrate defenses.
Inefficient processing and imperception to blindside pressure often force Jones to guess, leading to disastrous plays when operating beyond his first read. He frequently throws across the field from his primary read without taking even a cursory glance at the coverage. These wild behaviors inevitably lead to turnover-worthy plays.
The Answer: FALSE. At this point, Daniel Jones is not a franchise quarterback. Despite the arm talent and pre-snap capability, Jones lacks the dynamic post-snap processing required for elite quarterback play. Imperception to leverage, lack of an internal pocket clock, and a propensity for reckless throws are all significant flaws in isolation. Added together they are a deadly trio of difficult fixes.
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