Was there really another choice for a game to look back on this week?
The Giants travel to the defending Super Bowl Champs home this coming Monday for the first time since this very game occurred. It’s fitting, as Daniel Jones has a chance to beat Tom Brady and the Bucs, while finally winning a prime time game in the same stadium that he made his electrifying debut. Let’s take a look back.
The 2019 Giants started off 0-2, and decided to make the change to Daniel Jones at Quarterback. No one really knew what to expect, as the Giants selection of Jones in the draft was met with great criticism. Once Jones took the field in Tampa though, it looked like a whole new team. Jones made plays with his legs, moving around faster than any quarterback the Giants had seen in years, and he coined his now famous nickname, “Danny Dimes”, with beautiful passes to Darius Slayton and Sterling Shepard. This game also saw Evan Engram have a big game, mainly by being used in crossing routes (hint, hint, Jason Garrett), which highlighted his blazing speed, including a 75-yard touchdown in the second quarter. The cherry was put on top on the Giants final offensive drive. Daniel Jones marched the Giants down the field, and on fourth down, with the game on the line, the 6th overall pick took off and scored his second rushing touchdown of the game, and his fourth overall touchdown of the game. A missed field goal by Buccaneers kicker Matt Gay on the next drive sealed the deal, and the Giants got their first victory of 2019.
On this day, Daniel Jones had arrived.
It is important to note that this game wasn’t all sunshine and daisy’s. For one, the defense gave up 499 yards to the Bucs. Mike Evans absolutely torched Janoris Jenkins and the rest of the secondary, going for 190 yards and two touchdowns. Tampa was also able to go for 144 on the ground. The defense did have some bright spots, as Ryan Connelly had an interception (still can’t believe we cut him for DeVante Downs), Markus Golden had 2 sacks (still can’t believe we traded him for a 6th round pick), and Dexter Lawrence also had himself a sack. Overall though, it was the offense that kept the Giants in this game. It is amazing how just two years after this game, things have flip flopped, as the defense is keeping the Giants in games, and the offense is one of the league’s worst. Speaking of the Giants offense, Daniel Jones also wasn’t perfect in this game. Jones did have a fumble, previewed his poor characteristic of holding the ball too long and taking far too many sacks, and almost threw an interception. At the end of the day though, Jones did more than enough to win the Giants this game.
Monday, Daniel Jones comes full circle. Can he put on a performance like he did 2 years ago? He better, because the Giants season is riding on it happening. This 2019 showdown highlighted just how good Daniel Jones can be, while simultaneously showing glimpses of what he would struggle with. Since this game, Daniel has improved by ridding himself of his turnovers, and getting better week by week. The Giants defense has been gelling the past few weeks, the offense is getting most of their weapons back, and maybe, justttttttt maybe, Jason Garrett and Joe Judge looked themselves in the mirror and made some changes to this offense. If the Giants plan on winning this game, the 2021 coaching staff needs to do what the 2019 one did two years ago:
Let Danny Dime.
Highlights to this classic:
(Photo: Mike Zarrilli/Getty Images)