Early on in the pre-draft process quarterback Daniel Jones from the University of Duke was one of the prospects garnering a lot of attention and moving up draft boards. After a strong showing at the Reese’s Senior Bowl in the week of practice that proceeded the senior all-star game of which he was named MVP, the former Blue Devil standout was quickly gaining traction as a potential first-round pick.
The buzz around him began to tail off a bit in the last month and a half with a lot of focus being put on Kyler Murray’s official height and the Pro Days of the other top passers in this year’s class. However, Jones could see his stock go on the rise yet again after shining brightly at his Pro Day yesterday.
Murray seemed to be all anyone could talk about at the NFL Scouting Combine earlier this month despite not taking part of any of the on-field drills, but Jones took center stage and was the star of the show at Duke’s Pro Day as he showcased his arm talent and mechanics for large contingent of NFL scouts and executives.
Jones said that the goal that he and his staff set for what they wanted to put on display for those in attendance was to be aggressive as he threw the ball all over the field with both touch and velocity.
“We wanted to be aggressive, we wanted to show a lot of different things and overall I thought we did a pretty good job,” said Jones in a one-on-one interview with NFL Network’s draft expert Daniel Jeremiah following the completion of his throwing session.
Jeremiah was particularly impressed by the throws that he made down the field and outside the numbers, which some young quarterbacks struggle with coming out of college. He delivered the ball with precision to the outside shoulder of his targets on out-breaking routes toward the sideline as well.
“When you look at Daniel Jones, you look at the combination of size, athleticism, intelligence, toughness, worth ethic, all of those things, he checks all of those boxes,” said Jeremiah about what makes Jones such an appealing prospect and why he should go in the first round.
He attended the Manning Brothers passing academy in high school and he has ties to the Manning family through his college Head Coach David Cutcliffe who coached both Peyton and Eli in college as well at the University of Tennessee and at Ole Miss.
Jones is projected to go somewhere in the mid to late part of the first round and there are growing rumors that the New York Giants are not planning on taking a quarterback with the first of their two picks in the opening round. Their second pick is the 17th overall selection that they acquired from the Cleveland Browns in the Odell Beckham Jr. trade and that is also the range in which Jones is projected to come off the board. It would be quite poetic if he got drafted by the Giants and got to sit behind the last standing Manning in the league and be groomed to succeed him.