1. Sports
  2. /
  3. Bucs

Are the Tampa Bay Buccaneers the reason Daniel Jones is starting Sunday?

The Bucs have lost six of their last seven against the Giants and are have lost 12 of their last 15 meetings against rookie quarterbacks.
New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones (8) looks up at the jumbotron as head coach Pat Shurmur and starting quarterback Eli Manning huddle before an August preseason game. [ANDREW MILLS | NJ ADVANCE MEDIA/ANDREW MILLS | NJ ADVANCE MEDIA  |]
New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones (8) looks up at the jumbotron as head coach Pat Shurmur and starting quarterback Eli Manning huddle before an August preseason game. [ANDREW MILLS | NJ ADVANCE MEDIA/ANDREW MILLS | NJ ADVANCE MEDIA |]
Published Sep. 19, 2019

TAMPA — Giants coach Pat Shurmur said Wednesday that the team’s decision to pass the reins of the Giants offense to rookie quarterback Daniel Jones has more to do with the Giants’ standing than the Bucs.

Maybe it’s that Shurmur knows how teams that lose their first three games fare. Since 1990, only 2.9 percent make the playoffs. Last year’s Houston Texans are the only 0-3 team to make the postseason since 1998.

It’s possible that seeing the Giants convert just 5 of 23 third-down opportunities and average just 15.5 points under Eli Manning that prompted the decision. Then there’s the fact that Manning is 8-23 in games he’s started since the beginning of 2017.

The Bucs have lost six of their last seven meetings against the Giants, most recently a turnover-riddled 38-35 loss in 2018. They won a hard-fought game last Thursday in Carolina, but have lost nine of 12 dating to Week 7 last season.

Tampa Bay is also 3-12 against rookie quarterbacks dating back to 2011.

The perfect matchup, right coach?

“Not at all,” Shurmur said Wednesday.

Shurmur said starting the sixth overall pick in this year’s draft on the road against a Tampa Bay defense that’s much improved is just the challenge he wants for Jones.

New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones (8) stands by the line of scrimmage during a NFL football game against the Dallas Cowboys in Arlington, Texas, Sunday, Sept. 8, 2019. (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth) [MICHAEL AINSWORTH | AP]

"I think this is more about us moving forward as a football team," Shurmur said. "I feel like we're playing an outstanding team on the road. So there's no tougher test than that for a young player, but we feel like he's up for it."

The Bucs allowed 29 points a game last season, but just one touchdown through two games.

“I think (new defensive coordinator) Todd Bowles and his staff do an outstanding job of coaching them and it appears to me by how fast they’re playing that they understand their scheme here early in the year and they believe in what Todd’s teaching them,” Shurmur said. “I think they’re doing a good job of challenging in the back end. They’ve been disruptive up front and they’ve got an outstanding pass rusher that’s made an impact. I think they’ve done a good job of covering. Their linebackers are active and when you add a force inside like (Ndamukong) Suh, not to mention the other players, and you having the makings of a really good defense.”

MORE BUCS: Rookie Daniel Jones to start for Giants against Bucs

Since the Giants drafted Jones the biggest mystery was when he’d take over. The team committed to paying Manning $17 million a month before selecting Jones, and they are taking a $23.2 million cap hit for Manning. During the preseason, all signs pointed to another year of Eli. There was no training camp competition between the quarterbacks, though Jones played well in the preseason, posting an 83.5 completion percentage and 137.3 quarterback rating.

But why the Bucs, coach?

"We just feel like it's time," Shurmur said.

Contact Eduardo A. Encina at Follow @EddieInTheYard.


  1. San Francisco 49ers running back Raheem Mostert, who finishes with 220 yards rushing and four TDs, breaks away from the Green Bay Packers during the first half of their NFC Championship Game on Sunday, Jan. 19, 2020, in Santa Clara, Calif. [TONY AVELAR  |  AP]
    Little-known Raheem Mostert, a former skateboarder-turned-surfer-turned-football player out of New Smyrna Beach High, has a historic game, rushing for 220 yards and four touchdowns.
  2. Kansas City Chiefs receiver Tyreek Hill catches a touchdown pass in front of Tennessee Titans defensive back Logan Ryan during the first half of the AFC Championship Game on Sunday, Jan. 19, 2020, in Kansas City, Mo. [CHARLIE RIEDEL  |  AP]
    KC falls behind once again, this time 10-0, before rallying in the AFC Championship Game.
  3. East quarterback James Morgan, of Florida International University, (12) during the first half of the East West Shrine football game Saturday. [CHRIS O'MEARA  |  AP]
    Morgan, who leads his East team to a pair of touchdowns, raises his draft stock as do a few others the Bucs should keep an eye on.
  4. Jason Garrett had success against the Giants as Cowboys coach. Now he will face Dallas as New York's new offensive coordinator. [RON JENKINS  |  AP]
    The recently fired Dallas Cowboys coach stays in the NFC East.
  5. Steve Young was a supplemental draft pick of the Bucs in 1984 and started 19 games for Tampa Bay in 1985 and 1986 before he was traded to the 49ers for a pair of draft picks in 1987. THE ASSOCIATED PRESS [Tampa Bay Times]
    The Hall of Fame quarterback played two seasons with Tampa Bay before winning a Super Bowl with the 49ers
  6. A Super Bowl matchup involving former Buccaneers great John Lynch, left, and the San Francisco 49ers and Ryan Tannehill, right, and the Tennessee Titans could be tough to stomach for Tampa Bay Buccaneers fans. [Associated Press/DIRK SHADD | Times]
    Rick Stroud | For a lot of reasons, including gifting wins to both teams and GMs who got away, this would be a bad match up for Tampa Bay.
  7. Miami LB Shaquille Quarterman (55) during drills for the East-West Shrine Game at Tropicana Field on Monday. [DIRK SHADD  |  Tampa Bay Times]
    “They don’t yet have the mentality of a Miami Hurricane,” the linebacker says during the days leading up to the East-West Shrine Game.
  8. Todd Monken spent two seasons in Tampa Bay, the last as offensive coordinator, before being dismissed along with the rest of head coach Dirk Koetter's staff after the 2018 season.
    Tampa Bay’s former play-caller will be designing game plans for the Bulldogs against the Florida Gators next season.
  9. San Francisco 49ers general manager John Lynch before an NFL divisional playoff football game against the Minnesota Vikings on Jan. 11. [TONY AVELAR  |  AP]
    The former Bucs and Broncos safety has his team one win from the Super Bowl.
  10. Florida receiver Josh Hammond (18) on the field during practice for the East-West Shrine Game at Tropicana Field on Monday. [DIRK SHADD  |  Tampa Bay Times]
    Plus Plant High product Jake Fruhmorgen’s journey from Clemson to UF to Baylor to the East-West Shrine Game.