The Giants and Jets offenses and quarterback situations both have been disasters in 2023. But which New York football franchise is in a better position at QB both now and in the long term? Daily News NFL writers Pat Leonard and Antwan Staley discuss.
Pat: The Giants are in a better position because their futility and draft position should trump any illusions about their current state. Simply, they’re closer to drafting their new quarterback than the Jets are. They’ll likely hold a top-5 pick in April’s draft for one of the strongest quarterback classes in recent memory.
Daniel Jones’ two neck injuries, torn right ACL and early season struggles have pushed them to the realization that they need to look for their next QB. This year’s injuries to Jones and Tyrod Taylor also reinforced the value of depth, even down to the third quarterback on the roster.
So while Jones is owed a $35.5 million guaranteed salary in 2024, which will keep him on the roster to start the season and possibly for the entire year, in no way would or should that prevent the Giants from drafting a QB anyway.
This is the second time in three years that a bad season has spiraled into complete catastrophe in part because injuries have pushed the Giants to start a third-string QB. It was Jake Fromm in 2021, and it is Tommy DeVito here in 2023.
DeVito exceeded expectations with his three TD passes in Sunday’s win over Washington, but he’s not prepared to carry an NFL team to consistent victories.
It’s frightening that this season has gone so poorly that it’s become clear even an excellent rookie QB in 2024 won’t turn this into a good team immediately. The Giants’ problems run extremely deep.
It’s difficult to have confidence in GM Joe Schoen and head coach Brian Daboll to get the pick and this program right given what they’ve put on the field this year.
Jones will undoubtedly rehabilitate diligently and compete to protect his job. But in Jones’ defense, it’s likely the Giants will never be good enough around Jones to support him sufficiently at this point anyway. We may not see his best football until he goes and plays somewhere else.
This is much less murky than the Jets, who have pumped out propaganda that Zach Wilson is good at football and who will rest on Aaron Rodgers’ return from a torn Achilles to save them in 2024. Both are tactics that will leave them gasping for air at quarterback in the coming years, just as they are today.
Antwan: I agree. The Giants are in a much better position. The reason is that they can completely bottom out and select a quarterback in April’s draft. With Rodgers still hanging around, it is unlikely the Jets would do the same — although they should.
When the Packers selected Jordan Love in 2020, Rodgers was all in his feelings about it. Eventually, that was the end of his time in Green Bay.
Last offseason, the Jets bent over backwards for Rodgers and made many of his recommended moves. They signed Allen Lazard, Randall Cobb, Tim Boyle, Dalvin Cook and Billy Turner. They have yet to produce.
Now the Jets are stuck with an aging quarterback who might play just one more year and an offensive coordinator who isn’t a great play-caller, at least when Rodgers isn’t playing. Rodgers even wanted the Jets to stick with Wilson so they could potentially groom him to be the possible starter, but that has been a complete disaster.
Now, the Jets could have a high draft pick but will feel the pressure to try and build a team around a quarterback who’s coming off an Achilles tear. Rodgers will also be 41 in 2024.
Robert Saleh and Joe Douglas thought getting Rodgers would solve their problems. If anything, it is a band-aid, and Woody Johnson should completely tear this team down, at least offensively, and start over.
Not too many head coaches and general managers get more than three years after they selected a first-round bust at quarterback. But because of Rodgers, that’s probably what Saleh and Douglas will get.