Giants' Daniel Jones: 'I Didn't Play Well by Any Means' in Loss vs. Patriots

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorOctober 11, 2019

FOXBOROUGH, MASSACHUSETTS - OCTOBER 10: Daniel Jones #8 of the New York Giants runs with the ball against the New England Patriots during the first quarter in the game at Gillette Stadium on October 10, 2019 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. (Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)
Adam Glanzman/Getty Images

New York Giants rookie quarterback Daniel Jones was disappointed in his efforts against the New England Patriots in a 35-14 loss on Thursday, saying he "didn't play well by any means."

Giants Videos @SNYGiants

"I didn't play well by any means...bad plays, bad decisions" - Daniel Jones says he wasn't overwhelmed by playing the Patriots https://t.co/j87j1fATcy

When asked whether he was overwhelmed playing the undefeated Pats and their top-ranked defense, Jones offered the following response.

"I didn't play well by any means," Jones said. "I don't mean to confuse that, but I don't think it was overwhelming. I think it was just bad plays and bad decisions."

Jones completed 15 of 31 passes for 161 yards, one touchdown and three interceptions. Those numbers aren't good, but the ex-Duke signal-caller faced significant obstacles heading into the matchup.

Of note, the Giants were without their top two running backs (Saquon Barkley and Wayne Gallman), their No. 1 wideout (Sterling Shepard) and No. 1 tight end (Evan Engram).

The Patriots defense also came into Thursday having allowed just two rushing touchdowns and none through the air in its first five games.

That excellence was evident based on the Pats' air-tight coverage all night, per Next Gen Stats:

Next Gen Stats @NextGenStats

Daniel Jones struggled to find open receivers tonight, forcing passes into tight windows (< 1 yard of separation) on 15 of 31 pass attempts (49%). His 15 pass attempts into tight windows are the most of any QB in a game over the last two seasons. #NYGvsNE | #TNFonPrime https://t.co/Uj5D8ulO29

On the bright side, Jones did break that streak with a 64-yard touchdown pass down the sideline to Golden Tate in the second quarter.

New York Giants @Giants

Right on target 🎯 #GiantsPride | #NYGvsNE https://t.co/b2WNefzKTX

Still, Jones likely wants a few throws back, namely this pick from Pats cornerback Stephen Gilmore with the Giants facing a 1st-and-10 from the Patriots' 30-yard line in the beginning of the third quarter.

New England Patriots @Patriots

🔒🔒🔒🔒🔒 @BumpNrunGilm0re | #GoPats https://t.co/fYZn2uQu3i

Art Stapleton of the Record explained what happened on the play:

Art Stapleton @art_stapleton

Patriots disguised the coverage on Daniel Jones. Looked like he thought he was getting man coverage with Gilmore 1-on-1 with Ellison, but Duron Harmon was over the top. So Gilmore stayed underneath Ellison, Jones didn't anticipate it or see him. That's something he'll learn from.

Jones has now led the Giants to a 2-2 record since taking over as the starter in Week 3 at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He's accounted for seven touchdowns (five throwing, two rushing) and eight turnovers (six interceptions, two fumbles). He's posted a 60.7 percent completion rate and 6.6 yards per pass attempt.

Jones has mixed some brilliant plays with a few rookie mistakes, but he's shown enough potential for Giants fans to be excited about the future.

Eagles Game Plan producer Fran Duffy also put Jones' night into perspective:

Fran Duffy @fduffy3

Let’s maybe hold off on the negative Daniel Jones declarations, memes and chest pounding as we watch a rookie QB on the road against the No. 1 ranked defense in the NFL without his two top pass targets and a No. 3 RB on a short week.

The Giants will return home for their next game, which will take place on Sunday, Oct. 20, against the Arizona Cardinals at 1 p.m. ET.