Giants’ co-owner John Mara rips former offenses, defends Daniel Jones

New York Giants, Daniel Jones
Sep 14, 2020; East Rutherford, New Jersey, USA; New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones (8) scrambles as Pittsburgh Steelers outside linebacker T.J. Watt (90) pursues during the second half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Giants face an uphill battle with quarterback Daniel Jones. The reboot of the offensive line and his third offensive coordinator and head coach since being drafted back in 2019 mark an egregious sequence of events.

Last season, the Giants hosted the 30th ranked pass-blocking OL in football, but it was one of the worst groups they’d ever seen by most accounts. Over 11 games, Jones was sacked 22 times at a 5.7% rate, actually his lowest in his career after posting a 9.1% rate and 45 sacks back in 2020. Jones saw a decrease in sack percentage because the offense was running the football and settling for short route concepts rather than targeting downfield receivers.

Majority owner John Mara spoke to the media on Sunday, detailing the problematic position that Jones has faced over the years, trying to develop around lackluster schematics and porous playmakers.

“You tell me what quarterback could have thrived over these last couple years with what we had out there on offense?” Mara said. “I was in a health and safety committee meeting the other day and they showed our injuries over the last four years as compared with [other teams]. The last four years, we had more injuries than anybody in the league and a lot of ’em were on offense. So let’s give him a chance with a new staff and a better offensive line and we think he’ll be very successful.”

The Giants have been the most injured team in football since 2009. Some point to the training staff as a catalyst for that. The lack of execution and poor game management are also major variables. Jones sustained a concussion and neck injury last season, trying to elevate the offense and make something out of nothing. Running the football and diving headfirst into opponents is a recipe for disaster in the NFL. Jones found himself trying to overcompensate for a disturbingly bad protection scheme.

Despite the turnover concerns and decreasing overall production, management seems to have faith in Jones based on his decent arm talent and mobility.

“We still have a lot of confidence in Daniel and think he’s going to be a very good quarterback if we just put the right pieces around him and give him a little bit more continuity and stability,” Mara said. “He hasn’t had that since he’s been here. Let’s give him a chance to prove himself. He’s shown flashes of it, for sure.

With Jones’s 5th-year option coming due on May 2, the Giants don’t have much time to decide on his future. They can either lock him in for one more year guaranteed or slap him with the franchise tag or an extension if he dominates in 2022. Nonetheless, the odds are stacked against him once again, so the Giants should have the future in mind this upcoming draft.