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Daniel Jones Touted as 'Criminally Underrated' After Leading Giants' Upset Of Vikings

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured Columnist IVJanuary 16, 2023

MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA - JANUARY 15: Daniel Jones #8 of the New York Giants looks to pass during the first half against the Minnesota Vikings in the NFC Wild Card playoff game at U.S. Bank Stadium on January 15, 2023 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by David Berding/Getty Images)
David Berding/Getty Images

The New York Giants are playoff winners for the first time since their Super Bowl victory capped off the 2011 campaign.

New York defeated the Minnesota Vikings 31-24 in Sunday's NFC Wild Card Game at U.S. Bank Stadium behind a brilliant showing from the backfield combination of Daniel Jones and Saquon Barkley.

Its reward is a daunting divisional-round showdown with the NFC East rival Philadelphia Eagles, but it looked like a team capable of challenging the conference's top seed during its win over the Vikings.

Jones in particular stood out at 24-of-35 for 301 yards, two touchdowns and zero interceptions to go with 78 yards on the ground. He drew plenty of praise on social media for his clutch performance in a hostile environment:

Ari Wasserman @AriWasserman

I don't know if I'm alone in thinking this, but Daniel Jones is criminally underrated? I love watching him play.

B/R Gridiron @brgridiron

GIANTS TAKE THE LEAD 🍎 <br><br>Daniel Jones is 5/5 for 100 YDS and a TD 🔥 <br><br>(via <a href="https://twitter.com/NFL?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@NFL</a>)<a href="https://t.co/xJxn9cesJF">pic.twitter.com/xJxn9cesJF</a>

NFL @NFL

What a start in <a href="https://twitter.com/Daniel_Jones10?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@Daniel_Jones10</a>'s <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/NFLPlayoffs?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#NFLPlayoffs</a> debut.<br><br>📺: <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/NYGvsMIN?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#NYGvsMIN</a> on FOX<br>📱: Stream on NFL+ <a href="https://t.co/AJ2krfYypW">https://t.co/AJ2krfYypW</a> <a href="https://t.co/lR4pmAn0we">pic.twitter.com/lR4pmAn0we</a>

Bleacher Report @BleacherReport

Daniel Jones at halftime vs. Vikings 📊<br><br>12/16<br>143 Pass YDS<br>71 Rush YDS (franchise playoff record)<br>1 TD <a href="https://t.co/IzOpNz7LbU">pic.twitter.com/IzOpNz7LbU</a>

Robby Kalland @RKalland

playoff daniel jones <a href="https://t.co/tq6LapOOWg">pic.twitter.com/tq6LapOOWg</a>

mike freeman @mikefreemanNFL

Daniel Jones &gt; Eric Dickerson

Myron Medcalf @MedcalfByESPN

Is that Daniel Jones or 2015 Cam Newton?

NFL Fantasy Football @NFLFantasy

soooo what round are we drafting daniel jones in next year

Big Cat @BarstoolBigCat

Daniel Jones is playing out of his mind. Give him the max deal

Yahoo Fantasy Sports @YahooFantasy

Daniel Jones running through the Vikings defense <a href="https://t.co/5tp5mEg2sH">pic.twitter.com/5tp5mEg2sH</a>

NFL on CBS 🏈 @NFLonCBS

DANNY DIMES HAS NO FEAR <a href="https://t.co/SK092n3bfO">pic.twitter.com/SK092n3bfO</a>

Bill Simmons @BillSimmons

This game is awesome. I love Dimes so much. This guy could have played in any decade.

New York couldn't have scripted a better game, especially on offense.

It scored two touchdowns and a field goal on its first three drives with Jones torching Minnesota's overmatched defense with his legs, Barkley finding running room and the end zone, and Isaiah Hodgins hauling in a touchdown catch.

The Giants continued to methodically march down the field, stay ahead of the sticks and control the clock in a perfectly designed attack by head coach Brian Daboll. It continued in the second half with Barkley using his speed to create mismatches as a receiver before Daniel Bellinger caught a touchdown.

Despite New York's offensive efforts, the Vikings still came back to tie it in the fourth quarter and put the pressure back on Jones and the visitors. All the signal-caller did was lead a 12-play, 75-yard drive that included a physical quarterback sneak on fourth down and Barkley powering his way into the end zone for the game's final score.

The Giants survived a costly Darius Slayton drop when they were attempting to put the game away thanks to a final defensive stop and can now turn their attention to the Eagles thanks to an impressive overall showing.