The New York Giants started off on the wrong foot in weak one against the Pittsburgh Steelers, but there were plenty of positives to extract from the game.
Despite the Giantsâ€™ offensive line struggling significantly against an elite Steelers pass rush, quarterback Daniel Jones managed to stand in the pocket like â€œa manâ€ and deliver some accurate balls downfield. He finished the contest with 26 completions, amounting to a 63.41% completion rate, with 279 yards, two touchdowns, and two interceptions. He was sacked three times, which isnâ€™t indicative of how much pressure he was under throughout the entire contest.
According to Pro Football Focus, the Steelers generated 22 pressures in less than 2.5 seconds against the Giants. That led the NFL by a large margin, with the second-place team being the Los Angeles Chargers with 14 pressures. That means Jones was under duress for a majority of the contest, and he also managed to gain 22 yards on the ground.
Most pressures generated within 2.5 seconds in W1:
1. Pittsburgh Steelers – 22
2. Los Angeles Chargers – 14
2. Washington Football Team – 14
4. Kansas City Chiefs – 12 pic.twitter.com/IqYWzGx8W9
— PFF (@PFF) September 17, 2020
The New York Giants have some things to work on with Daniel Jones:
Objectively, Jones made a few poor decisions, including one interception in the red zone where he couldnâ€™t get the ball off in time with Bud Dupree closing in. Another interception came when TJ Watt jumped in front of a short route. Both are issues that can be worked out in the film room, and I expect to see Jones improve gradually each and every week. Offensively, Jones was graded at 82.1, the highest player on offense for the Giants, and the best of his career up to this point.
â€œI like the way he played aggressive. He stood in the pocket â€“ it was obviously a strong rush coming at him all night â€“ he played confident in there, he stood in there as long as he could, he delivered some good, accurate passes for us,â€ head coach Joe Judge said of Jones. â€œHe had two throws I know he wants back down at the goal line, thatâ€™s something we canâ€™t have happen.
The second-year quarterback was under pressure on 26 dropbacks, which was six more than any other quarterback in week one. Ultimately, he had a strong start it was 2020 season, portraying an increased ability to protect the ball. He was seen holding onto the ball two hands at some points, with the Steelers defensive line closing in around him. That is a positive sign and attests to his maturity.