New York Giants first-round pick, Daniel Jones needs to adjust quickly to the city’s unfair criticism and use it for his career motivation.
The New York Giants are a polarizing organization in the National Football League because of its rich history. The fanbase stretches farther than the New York and New Jersey area so many harsh opinions could fly from any direction.
The target of many attacks this offseason has been Giants general manager Dave Gettleman for his array of trades and moves to change the image of the franchise. Gettleman sent a fan favorite in Odell Beckham Jr. packing to the Cleveland Browns while drafting quarterback Daniel Jones sixth overall earlier than many experts expected. Jones has become the punching bag of critics without actually touching the field in an official NFL game already creating unrest with fans.
Jones is in a tough position because he plays in one of the most stubborn sports cities in the country. New York City has the reputation of not being for the weak at heart, and their team’s players need to have the strong will not let get rattled easily. The biggest jab at the former Duke University standout took place this past Monday night while attending the New York Yankees game at Yankees Stadium.
Jones was shown on the stadium’s giant video screen only to be followed by a chorus of boo’s from the Bronx, New York fans. It was an odd situation because Jones has been a model citizen in camp with the media and saying all the right things about the fans. Whether the hostile response was truly meant for him or not Jones will forever be linked to the distrust fans have for Gettleman.
Jones talked about adjusting to the New York fanbase back in early May to reporters and was optimistic about the challenge.
“I think anyone that comes into New York, you can see that there is more attention than they have had previously,” Jones said. “It is all part of it. It is my job to make people believe in me and I understand that. There is a lot of work to do and I am excited to do that.”
Jones should look no further than his teammate and person he’s competing for the starting job against Eli Manning for words of wisdom on dealing with unhappy fans. Manning has had horrible seasons statistically and won two super bowls but still keeps the same composure regardless of the situation. It’s become his staple and something that New York fans have gone on to respect the most about him.
It’s only June so Jones will have to bear through the uneasy taunts until finally touching the field in a professional game. The first preseason game will set the tone for his level of resiliency as he will be judged fairly in front of the always impatient audience.