Where do the New York Giants stand as they head into the 2021 NFL season? Where do they rate against the other 31 teams in the league?
Doug Farrar of Touchdown Wire has the Giants ranked 25th overall and he’s right in doing so. The Giants have had seven losing seasons over the last eight years and, even with all of their recent changes, can’t be trusted upon to suddenly become a playoff team.
Farrar cites the trials of third-year quarterback Daniel Jones as a hurdle the Giants must overcome. General manager Dave Gettleman staked his career and the Giants’ future on Jones, who must come through in order for the Giants to get back to prominence.
Jones showed third-round tape in college have unfortunately transferred to the NFL more often than not. The Giants have a mostly risk-averse offense with Jones under center, and that was not at all helped by the fact that running back Saquon Barkley missed 14 games last season due to injury.
True. Jones has a ball security issue and makes poor decisions with the football all too often to the degree where he has cost the Giants games. Barkley’s status is still unknown, but the growing consensus seems to be that he won’t be in uniform for the team’s opener against Denver.
But there is hope. If Jones can’t come to the mountain, the Giants have brought the mountain to him. He almost can’t fail with all the enhancements they’ve made this offseason on offense.
To his credit, Gettleman has done everything possible to shore up his QB1. The Giants selected Florida joystick receiver Kadarius Toney with the 20th overall pick in the 2021 draft, and signed former Lions start Kenny Golladay to a four-year, $72 million contract. Add that to Darius Slayton, Sterling Shepard, and Evan Engram, and Jones will certainly not be lacking for targets. Perhaps offensive coordinator Jason Garrett should open the deep passing game more — last season on throws of 20 or more air yards, Jones completed 18 of 39 passes for 617 yards, 506 air yards, four touchdowns, and no interceptions — so that the Giants’ offense can try to match its underrated defense, led by Patrick Graham, before Graham gets a head coaching gig somewhere.
That’s a big ask to have Garrett change his stripes. We still haven’t heard if Garrett will even be calling the plays this season, so we could get surprised by that development. They have to throw the football down the field more and it only makes sense that they will. Jones is a very accurate deep passer so this will be an interesting one to watch.