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New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones has heard it all. Drafted at No. 6 overall by the Giants, Jones wasn't supposed to be selected so high. Giants GM Dave Gettleman and head coach Pat Shurmur weren't going to let Jones slip away. They believe he could be the heir apparent to the aging Eli Manning.
Jones entered the 2019 draft as one of the top quarterback prospects in the class. Most draft analysts did not view Jones as the top prospect, however. That title belonged to either Kyler Murray, the top overall pick, or Dwayne Haskins, the strong-armed thrower out of Ohio State. Jones checked in at No. 2, 3, or even 4 depending upon who you asked.
Many believe Jones' selection at No. 6 was unworthy for a number of reasons. One is his arm strength. Granted, Jones does not have the arm of Haskins or Drew Lock, who was taken by Denver in the second round, but he gets the ball out quickly and can make most throws. Jones also had the lowest rating on deep throws of any of the top prospects in the draft and his career 6.4 yards per pass attempt raised some concerns.
Still, Gettleman and the Giants saw an NFL quarterback in Jones. At 6-feet-5-inches and 221 pounds, Jones has an NFL body. He is a good athlete and his 4.81 40-yard dash time shows that he does have some speed. What Gettleman and Shurmur liked about Jones was his ability to make good decisions quickly and get the ball out.
Jones played in this year's Senior Bowl - he was the MVP - and went 8-for-11 for 115 yards and scored a touchdown each rushing and passing. After three series in the Senior Bowl, Gettleman knew that Jones was their guy.
The other intangible that Jones possesses is what new Tampa Bay head coach Bruce Arians called grit in his book The Quarterback Whisperer. Jones has a certain toughness that will help him do well in the NFL. As a high schooler, Jones was knocked around so much in a game that his helmet broke. He ran to the sideline, missed one play, got a new helmet, and returned to the field.
At Duke, Jones broke his collarbone and returned to action just three weeks later. It's that kind of toughness that will help Jones get past all of the negativity surrounding his selection by the Giants. Not only will his toughness help, Jones was also probaby the smartest quarterback in the draft. An economics major, Jones originally committed to Princeton before landing at Duke. All signs point to success for Jones who got his first action with the Giants this week at rookie minicamp.