Daniel Jones made his home debut against the Washington Redskins Sunday afternoon, and fans left Metlife Stadium satisfied with a 24-3 victory. A 2-2 record and a divisional win looks adequate on paper, but Giants fans should feel wary about the upcoming weeks for the G-men.
Danny Dimes’ performance didn’t disappoint, but it wasn’t perfect.
He displayed maturity beyond his years, but Jones threw two interceptions on back-to-back drives. Luckily, he appeared to have a short memory. After the picks, he led a two minute drive that put three points on the board, extending the lead to 17-3.
In his first two starts, Jones scored after turning the ball over, so he had great poise and appeared to be a relentless competitor. There are more positives than negatives to take away from the interceptions because they showed Jones is willing to take chances and that he’s unfazed by mistakes.
Many forget Peyton Manning led the NFL in interceptions his rookie year. Jones continues to elude pressure, running for first downs or making perfect throws rolling to both his left and right.
Jones’ performance aside, a win in the NFL isn’t easy but it is easier when you go against the 0-3 Washington Redskins.
The Redskins are plagued with injuries and their quarterback situation isn’t as promising as the Giants’. Their starting QB, Case Keenum, was benched in the second quarter for rookie QB, Dwayne Haskins, who many thought the Giants would draft over Daniel Jones.
Both Washington quarterbacks threw for a total of four interceptions and only managed to put three points on the board.
Considering Washington was without their best running back, Derrius Guice, best wide receiver, Terry McLaurin, and best offensive linemen, Brandon Scherff, anything but a blowout would have been unacceptable. The Giants weren’t playing against equal competition, so besides overcoming two interceptions and two fumbles, they weren’t tested.
The defense got the job done, but they didn’t leave the field unscathed.
Rookie linebacker, Ryan Connelly, was putting on a good performance before injuring his leg. Connelly was the signal caller for the defense after taking that assignment from the injured LB, Alec Ogletree (hamstring).
That’s a tough break for the struggling defense and it comes at a rough time since the Minnesota Vikings travel to New York for their next game. With a depleted linebacker corps, the Giants will most likely struggle against Vikings running back, Dalvin Cook, who leads the league in rushing yards.
Vikings also have two star wide receivers in Adam Thielen and Stefon Diggs, so the defense that was ranked third worst heading into week three will have their hands full.
The Vikings defense, ranked twelfth best in the NFL, is stout and if the Giants offense struggles, it’s unlikely the defense will be able to bail them out. It’s very important for Daniel Jones and the Giants to get an early lead because the Vikings like to run the ball and take a lot of time off the clock.
Daniel Jones’ quick decision making and athleticism will come in handy as he’ll have to deal with the likes of Everson Griffen and Danielle Hunter, two elite pass rushers for the Vikings.
Backup running backs, Wayne Gallman and Jon Hilliman, combined for 96 yards and a touchdown against Washington, but they should have a less successful outing against the Vikings.
The Giants offense will have to rely on Jones’ arm, and a receiver besides Sterling Shepard or Evan Engram will have to step up. A majority of the passes go to those two receivers and the better defenses will take advantage of that. Jones will have another weapon in his arsenal for next Sunday as Golden Tate comes back from his four game suspension. Tate was signed over the offseason and he will surely reinforce the receiving core.
After the Vikings, the Giants fly up to New England to face the mighty Patriots.
Their defense as of week four is ranked first in the league and they’ve scored more points than they’ve allowed. Offensively, Patriots Head Coach Bill Belichick will likely go after the Giants’ thin linebacker corps, and defensively he’ll likely make someone other than Engram or Shepard beat them.
These next two weeks will determine whether or not this team can compete for the playoffs. Tom Brady and Bill Belichick are at the top of the food chain right now in the NFL, and they have been there for the past two decades.
If you want to make it far in the NFL, you have to be good enough to beat them. Just look at Eli Manning’s two rings.
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