Team Giants


Special Report

Sent: 09-07-22

Dave Klein was the Giants' beat writer for The Star-Ledger from 1961 to 1995.
He is the author of 26 books and he was one of only three sportswriters to have covered all the Super Bowls up until last year. Dave has allowed TEAM GIANTS to reprint some of his articles.


By Dave Klein
For months, if not years, we have been offering up every known excuse for why Daniel Jones hasn't emerged into a star quarterback for the Giants.

You know, he had a lousy offensive line. His receivers weren't that good. His running game was severely hampered by the injuries to Saquon Barkley. The coaches failed him somehow.

It was always something.

Well, that's finished now. Jones has a far better offensive line than he has had, one in which all five starters, and the replacements, know how to block, know the value of a solid block and can protect the harried quarterback.

He has receivers who are fast and tall, who can turn invisible when they fly downfield and can make the cut across the middle of the field without panicking.

Barkley, we are told, is fully healthy, has all his strength and speed and is anxious to strangle all those fans who insist he was picked too high.

Oh, and the tight end who dropped one of every four passes, Evan Engram, is gone, and as one observer put it so succinctly last spring: "Whoever they got instead of him is an improvement."

So where is a critic of this Giants' offense to turn? Perhaps to Jones? Perhaps to wonder whether he was the right pick (sixth overall) in the 2019 draft.

And perhaps, as well, to wonder whether new head coach Brian Daboll and new general manager Joe Schoen made the right decision in releasing Davis Webb and leaving only Tyrod Taylor as the only other QB on the roster.

Well, the time is now. It was interesting to note that the Giants chose not to sign Jones to a fifth season, almost an after-thought in most cases, so he is playing this season as a budding free agent, and if he has one of those magnificent "coming out" performances, the Giants will know what they're getting when they re-sign him to a major contract.

But if he struggles again, it's good-bye time. And we should know that well before the season ends.

As you all know, it starts Sunday (4:35 p.m.) in Nashville, Tenn., against the powerful Titans who are lukewarm favorites to win it all this year. But with regard to Jones, the Titans' defense is sound. He's going to need that offensive line, those receivers, a good tight end and Barkley at his best.

In his three-year career since being plucked from Duke, Jones had started 37 games. His record is 12-25, and frankly, that's not good enough. Sure, he has had some injuries. His receivers have been hurt. So, too, has Barkley. And his line stunk.

But that's all in the past. Now it's his job to win, or his to lose, and the team's immediate future depends on which path he's going to take.

If he suddenly blossoms into a star, he will have taken the road less travelled. If he fails to show immediate and overwhelming improvement, he'll be on a different road by next season.

"When we drafted him," says team President and CEO John Mara, "there was no doubt he could become a championship quarterback."

Well, sir, there has been a ton of doubt so far, but no more. This is his year, win or lose.

EXTRA POINTS - The Giants announced that wide receiver Darius Slayton, who has been under-whelming in his three seasons, has accepted a modification in his 2022 salary. Instead of earning $2.54 million this year, he'll be paid $965,000 - with a chance to earn a lot of it back through performance incentives during the season.

The team practice Wednesday produced four players with limited participation - SS Dane Belton (clavicle), LB Azeez Ojulari (calf), LB Kayvon Thibodeaux (knee) and WR Sterling Shepard (Achilles).

You can subscribe Dave's newsletters which run much more frequently than what is available here. - Team Giants

NOW - Send a request to for a free week's worth of news!

Previous Articles
Special Report

Special Report

Players Signed
Special Report

The Outlook
Special Report

Brian Daboll OTA

Click on the Team Giants logo to be informed of all Giants game previews,
reviews and off season football news.