by Spiro Kasabian @nyspawtsguy_spi
Film Room: Belichick Makes Jones Look Like a Rookie
Anyone who expected Daniel Jones to go through his rookie season in the NFL, without taking some lumps, was misguided. There were going to be games like the one Jones had last Thursday against the New England Patriots. Bill Belichick is the greatest defensive mind the NFL has ever seen, and he has schooled rookies and veterans alike over the years. Jones’ performance is nothing to hang his head about, but still…it wasn’t pretty.
In the Training Room:
Going into the Thursday night’s game in Foxborough, the New York Giants were severely undermanned offensively. Jones was missing a ton of firepower on offense in the form of Saquon Barkley, his backup Wayne Gallman, Evan Engram, and Sterling Shepard.
Heading into a matchup against the best defense in the league (statistically), it was a recipe for disaster. Throw in 25+ MPH winds, and you had a perfect storm going against young Daniel Jones.
Predictably, Jones had his “Welcome to the NFL” game. Jones threw three interceptions, and all three provided different teaching moments for the rookie quarterback. Stephon Gilmore may be the best corner in the league, and he lived up to that billing last Thursday. Jones continued to go after Gilmore, despite having no success.
In the first quarter, the Giants took over on their 2nd drive with the score tied at 0-0. On the second play of that drive, Jones tried to hit Golden Tate on a slant, with Gilmore draped all over him. The ball came out late and was tipped up into the air in the middle of the field. Throwing late over the middle of the field is NEVER a good thing. The ball was intercepted by Simon.
“Late force.”– Daniel Jones on his 1st pick
Jones had another throw on a slant to Cody Latimer that could have easily been picked off by Stephon Gilmore on the next drive. This came on 3rd & 5 and Gilmore made a great break on the ball. Are we sensing a theme yet?
On Jones’ second interception of the game, the Giants had the ball at their own 35-yard line. Shurmur called for a play-action pass (they don’t work as good with Jon Hilliman in the backfield), and Jones had some time to throw, but couldn’t find anyone open. Jones tried extending the play but still could not find anyone open. Just as he was trying to throw the ball away, his arm was hit, and the ball floated into a defender’s hands. Again, this is a rookie mistake and Jones needed to get rid of that ball sooner and live to fight another day.
“Need to get rid of it sooner.”– Daniel Jones on his 2nd pick
Jones’ last interception was his most egregious. At first, it seemed like Ellison might have run a lazy or rounded off route. In looking into it further, this was a Gilmore/Belichick special, where the young QB was simply fooled. Playing Cover 2 earlier in the game, Gilmore jumped an under route and that left the TE corner route wide open. Belichick called that same defense again, but this time, Gilmore sunk back into the zone and was in prime position to pick off Jones.
“Bad decision. Bad read.”– Daniel Jones on his 3rd pick
It wasn’t all bad for Jones last Thursday night. He managed to throw a dime to Golden Tate for a long TD earlier in the game, and it’s throws like that, that make Giant fans very hopeful for the future. Daniel was taken to the School of Belichick and had his “Rookie Game”. I have faith that he will learn from this and be better because of this experience.