The New York Giants just earned their first win of the 2021 season. In thrilling fashion, the Giants pulled off an overtime upset over the New Orleans Saints to improve their record to 1-3. Quarterback Daniel Jones had a career game that propelled the team to victory.
Daniel Jones threw for a single-game career-high 402 passing yards against the Saints on Sunday. Much of Jones’s yardage was gained on deep passes, 15 or 20+ yards downfield. The Giants opened up their offense, calling more deep passing plays, allowing Danny to deliver some big-time dimes.
Daniel Jones thriving off deep passing attack
Through the first three weeks of the 2021 season, Daniel Jones attempted only 7 passes of 20+ yards downfield (about 2.3 attempts per game). Fans and analysts have criticized Jason Garrett’s offensive scheme for being too “dink-and-dunk” and not taking enough shots downfield. Garrett and Jones heard the criticisms and opened the offense up on Sunday.
In the Giants’ Week Four victory, Daniel Jones threw 5 passes of 20+ yards downfield, far more than he has been throwing on average this season. Jones lit it up on these attempts, going 2/5 with 106 yards, 2 touchdowns, and 1 irrelevant interception (the hail mary attempt at the end of the first half).
Even while scaling the threshold back, the Giants were throwing the ball further downfield than the rest of the NFL on Sunday. Daniel Jones had 9 completions on throws 10+ yards downfield in Week 4, the most among all quarterbacks (PFF).
On passes 15+ yards downfield, Daniel Jones was surgical. The Giants’ quarterback was 8 of 11 for 229 and 2 touchdowns on throws of 15+ air yards (Jordan Raanan ESPN). The downfield passing attack is letting Daniel Jones breakout.
New York Giants fans might be discouraged by their team’s 1-3 start to the season. Week Four was a step in the right direction, but by no means does it make the Giants a Super Bowl contender. Despite this lowly record, the Giants have reasons for optimism. The biggest reason for optimism: Daniel Jones.
Daniel Jones is developing into a franchise quarterback. Through four weeks of the 2021 season, Jones looks like one of the best signal-callers in the NFL. If the Giants are going to turn things around, it’s going to be because of Daniel Jones.