Although the Giants were one of the worst teams in the NFL last year (and lost Odell Beckham Jr. this offseason), there’s a lot to be excited about when it comes to their future. That was shown in Week 1 of the preseason, when they beat the New York Jets.
They don’t get to celebrate for long though and if they want any real momentum a great performance against the Bears would be a major step in the right direction. Who exactly needs to have those big games though?
Here are three players to watch on the New York Giants in preseason Week 2 against the Chicago Bears.
3. Daniel Jones
I mean, could there be a more obvious choice here? The rookie quarterback was already in the headlines for a number of reasons. He was drafted sixth overall and a lot of people criticized the New York Giants for taking him so early.
However, they’re extremely high on him and he did everything right in his first preseason game.
Jones went 5-for-5 with 67 yards and one touchdown in his debut. If there’s anything you could say against the game it would be that Jones wasn’t really asked to do too much and the Jets’ defense was pretty bad all day (Giants’ QBs combined to go 29-of-37 for 397 yards and three touchdowns).
That being said, that touchdown pass from Jones was money and no matter what everyone else did or what he was asked to do, you can’t deny he did his job.
The Bears will pose a much bigger threat though. Their defense is elite and even in the preseason should bring pressure and different coverages. Jones will likely have a bigger role as well and more time to prove himself. With a bigger role (more than one possession) that also means he’ll be asked to do more.
So there should be more looks for Jones and it will be sink or swim. Will he take another step forward and continue silencing any and all doubt? Or will he struggle and stir up the critics once again?
Not only is Jones a player to watch for Giants’ fans, he’s someone everyone should keep an eye on this week.
2. TJ Jones
TJ Jones is someone I’ve really liked ever since his days at Notre Dame. He hasn’t really had a chance to shine in the NFL but this could be that chance.
The Giants wide receiver situation at the moment is murky at best. Most of their top guys are either hurt or suspended. That means someone has to emerge and carry the load right?
Why not TJ Jones? In the first week of the preseason he exploded for 72 yards and a touchdown on six receptions. He’s someone that could be really solid out of the slot and play outside as well if needed.
At 27, he’s still got a lot of time to figure things out and put together a solid career too. With that in mind, there’s no reason for the Giants not to give him a look.
He impressed in week 1 meaning he’ll likely get a solid amount of playing time in week 2. The Giants are desperate for receivers so this is an entire position to watch, but he should be number one on your list.
Jones might just find himself with a sizable role at the start of the regular season, and don’t be surprised if he does great things with it.
1. Jabrill Peppers
I was going to pick another “Jones” just for the symmetry but there were no others on the roster.
Jabrill Peppers was a piece in the Odell Beckham Jr. trade. He’s also the replacement to Landon Collins at safety. That’s two massive pairs of cleats that he has to fill.
Peppers is a very solid player but he now has this unneeded burden of being linked to these two players. Due to that, anything less than awesome play could get the pesky fans that poke holes in everything to start their complaining.
Peppers has looked solid in camp and is the clear starter heading into the year. However, he’s still getting use to the system and the team. That means his performances in the preseason might carry a little more weight than you’d usually expect from a proven veteran.
Peppers doesn’t need to go out there and show out. He just needs to prove he’s comfortable and will make the plays people are expecting from him.
Still, he’s must-watch this week (and entire preseason).