Daniel Jones has improved throughout his NFL career, particularly under the tutelage of second-year head coach Brian Daboll. Jones looked like a different QB in 2022, using his versatility as a pocket passer and outside the pocket as a runner. Unfortunately for Jones, despite his recent advancements, he is known as a player who struggles in prime time.
If you include playoff appearances, Jones is 1-12 in prime-time games. The New York Giants signed Jones to a four-year, $160 million contract extension. With the extension and the commitment from the franchise, expectations are heightened. Jones and Daboll combined to get the Giants to the playoffs last season, but an appearance in the playoffs is no longer the standard.
Why Does Daniel Jones Struggle in Prime Time?
To be fair to Jones and the Giants, his prime-time performances should have additional context. The Giants have been the underdogs in all but one of these games. New York was heavy double-digit underdogs in five of those contests. These details suggest what you may have expected: The Giants are playing good teams in prime time.
Daniel Jones in primetime is 1-12 SU, including 0-5 SU at home per @Bet_Labs.
— John Ewing (@johnewing) October 2, 2023
Jones has never had the best weapons around him to thrive at the NFL level. Who is the best receiver Jones has had to throw to during his NFL career? Exactly.
Jones has Saquon Barkley, admittedly, one of the better pass-catching backs in the NFL, and Jones now has a matchup nightmare in Darren Waller at TE, but his receivers have been among the worst in the league.
Yet, when you play the QB position, you get too much credit for the wins and too much blame for the losses. Football fans and the sports media are not the most understanding bunch, so don’t expect the negative prime-time narrative to change around Jones until he wins more prime-time games.
Where Do the Giants Go From Here?
The Giants must get their offense rolling smoothly heading into Monday Night Football. Unfortunately for Giants fans, Barkley is doubtful for the contest against the Seahawks and is unlikely to suit up. The Giants need other offensive weapons to step up and threaten a beatable Seattle defense.
Please use Darren Waller for something other than a crossing route tonight.
— Belt Guy (@ThisIsNotZain) October 2, 2023
Expect Waller to be moved around the Giants’ offensive formation to cause headaches for the Seahawks secondary. Jones should target Waller early and often because he is the top weapon in the offense, and the Giants need to get the versatile pass catcher in rhythm. If the Giants can’t get it going, the 2023 season may get away from them fast.