Giants quarterback Daniel Jones threw 24 touchdown passes as a rookie. Which is very good. He had 18 fumbles. Which is not.
In fact, Jones’ 18 fumbles were the most by any NFL player since former Vikings quarterback Daunte Culpepper fumbled 23 times in 2002.
This year, Jones is working on cutting down on his fumbles. He’s been working with his former coach at Duke, David Cutcliffe, to address the situation.
“We have a bunch of drills that are designed for pocket movement,” Cutcliffe said, via Dan Duggan of TheAthletic.com. “We’re using equipment people, the coaches — anybody we can to just create small, tight places in the pocket. One thing people forget is the sound of the pocket. What does noise do to most normal people? You flinch. You have to create a focus. So I yell, I do different things.”
Last month, Simms and I discussed Jones’ fumbling on PFT Live. The challenge ultimately is one of awareness; knowing when defenders are in the vicinity of the hand holding the ball, knowing when to tuck the ball away while on the move, knowing how much time the quarterback has to get rid of the ball as a defender closes in for a hit aimed at jarring the ball loose.
It’s likely something that Jones will improve with time and repetitions, as he better understands how his body fits within the broader jumble of human beings flying around on a football field, with 11 of which having sharply different goal and objectives than the other 11. If he doesn’t improve, it will be hard for him to become the best quarterback he can be — and for the Giants to win as many games as they can.