Pat Shurmur just finished what Ben McAdoo started a couple of years ago.
The Giants’ second-year head coach officially benched Eli Manning for the foreseeable future on Tuesday and named rookie first-round pick Daniel Jones the starter. It’s crazy to think that the two quarterbacks that started the 2018 matchup between these two teams won’t step on the field less than a year later, but that’s life in the NFL.
HC Pat Shurmur informed Eli Manning this morning of his decision to go with Daniel Jones."Eli was obviously disappointed, as you would expect, but he said he would be what he has always been, a good teammate, and continue to prepare to help this team win games,” Shurmur said.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) September 17, 2019
The Giants are not a good team. The offense lacks explosion outside of Saquon Barkley and now, there will likely be some major growing pains with Jones at the helm.
But in the NFL, one team’s misfortune is oftentimes another team’s good fortune. That appears to be the case for the Bucs this weekend.
Jones will face off against a defense that has allowed just one offensive touchdown, less than five yards per play, and has a player in Shaq Barrett that was the leading sack master in the NFL until Myles Garrett passed him on Monday Night Football.
According to Football Outsiders, the Bucs possess the fourth-best defense in terms of DVOA. They are 14th in passing defense and first in rushing defense, which bodes well for Sunday’s matchup considering Barkley will likely get as many touches as possible.
When it comes to regular stats, the Bucs are fourth in yards per play allowed (4.6), seventh in third down conversion percentage (30%), tied for ninth in first downs per game (18.5), and tied for first in fourth down conversion percentage (0%).
That’s tough sledding for a rookie, even if he was a top-10 pick in the draft. Sunday represents a great opportunity for this defense to continue to grow and stack good games.
It also represents a great opportunity to reach the 2-1 mark on the season, especially if the defense plays like it has been.