QB Daniel Jones
December 30, 2020
Q: We asked you a lot in the offseason about what it would be like learning a new offense when it was very early. Now you’ve been in it for 16 weeks. I’m curious what are some of the biggest differences or biggest changes that you’ve had to make this season as a quarterback?
A: Obviously, the terminology and learning how we’re going to call things, how we’re going to ID things from that standpoint. My job pre-snap and post-snap is a little bit different in this system. But I think that’s something that we’ve gotten comfortable with and I’ve gotten comfortable with. Seeing certain plays, seeing certain concepts, being able to rep them and see them in live game action, learn from those reps and kind of take those mental notes or mental pictures to what you get in the game against certain plays and certain looks and being able to learn from that. I certainly feel comfortable where I am now and I’ve enjoyed learning it and working through it.
Q: The way things are trending, the Cowboys are scoring a lot of points the last month of the season and winning a lot of games. If that trend continues, how equipped do you think you are and your offense is to match points with a team that’s scoring upwards of 20s, 30s? You guys almost did that the first time against the Cowboys. How about now?
A: We’re confident as an offense. We have to take advantage of our opportunities to score points, particularly when we get the ball in the red zone and move the ball down there. We’re certainly confident in our ability to do that and score points.
Q: The results have not shown that. What gives you that confidence? What gives you the sense that you’re getting close?
A: Well, we have done it at times. You’re right, we need to be more consistent with it. We need to finish those opportunities. But we have the guys capable of doing it. We’ve done it in spurts this year. It’s going to take our best game on Sunday, and that’s certainly what we’re preparing for.
Q: This is essentially a playoff game. It’s an elimination game for whoever loses. How do you intend on approaching this game? Do you expect anything different? A lot of times with quarterbacks, these are the kinds of games that people judge you on.
A: We’re not focused on anything that happens after Sunday. Our job is to prepare as well as we can and as hard as we can to play our best game Sunday. That’s where our focus is, is to be as prepared as we possibly can and play well. That’s certainly my individual focus as well. That’s the goal and that’s kind of our mindset going in.
Q: Do you expect it to feel like a normal regular season game or how much do you think the intensity might be ramped up to a different level than you’ve seen so far?
A: Well, it is a division game against an opponent we know very well. From that standpoint, yeah, it will certainly be an intense atmosphere and guys will be ready to go.
Q: Do you feel ready to run now? You haven’t had a designed carry since you hurt your hamstring. You only have one so far in the two games since you’ve been back. Do you feel like you’re able to make plays on the ground when called upon?
A: Yeah, I’ll continue to work with the trainers and trust that program. I’ve played from the pocket the past couple weeks, and I expect to continue to do that until I’m healthy. We’ll see what exactly, but I expect the game plan and what I’m asked to do to be fairly similar to what it’s been these past few weeks.
Q: How much does that limit the entire offense do you think, when you’re not able to make those plays? That was a big part of what you guys were doing for a long time.
A: We have a lot of ways to run the ball. We have really good runners and guys we can get into space and can make plays. We’ll continue to do that, get the ball to those guys. I’m not sure it limits us a whole lot, but we have to be good with what we can do.
Q: How hard is it on you to sort of curb those instincts to take off with the ball and run, if that is in fact what you’re being asked to do?
A: It’s certainly something I have to be aware of with my mobility and what I can do, and something I’m cognizant of playing in the game. But it’s how I’ve played these last couple of weeks and I’ve kind of gotten used to it.
Q: When did you really feel comfortable in this offense? Was it harder to learn a new offense in your second year than maybe you thought it would be when you first realized you were going to have to last January?
A: I certainly feel like I’ve learned every week and I’ve improved every week. I’m not sure that I think about my improvement and my progression and scope with reference to our offense and understanding the system. I think of it more as me as a player and as a second-year quarterback in this league learning and trying to improve. I felt comfortable in this offense this whole year. There certainly have been things I’ve learned and picked up on throughout the way. But as far as how I see my progression and my improvement, I’m not sure that I look at it based on being comfortable in the offense or anything specific to that necessarily.
Q: I just want to go back a second. You said you intend to play from the pocket until you’re healthy. Do you not consider yourself near full strength? Is that kind of what you’re referring to there?
A: I feel good, I feel healthy. But I think you can tell from the tape that I’m not… I can’t do a lot of the same things I’m used to doing. I’ll continue to work and work to improve. But for the time being, I’ll probably have to adjust the way I play. I’ve been doing that the last few weeks.
Q: I’m not asking you to put a number on it. But how close are you then to being at that point? How much are you limited?
A: I certainly haven’t been as involved in the run game, certain areas of getting out of the pocket, scrambling, things like that. But I feel good. I feel a lot better, and I’ll continue to work with the trainers and improve.