Quarterback Daniel Jones
Q: You guys have an opportunity to clinch a playoff spot with a win at Minnesota. What does that mean for you for as a player, and does that add any extra motivation?
A: It's definitely exciting, but I don't think it's extra motivation. I think we're going to prepare as hard as we can, and that doesn't change week-to-week. I think we've been doing that. (We're) treating it one week at a time, and this is an awesome opportunity for us. I don't think the preparation or the approach changes, but we're certainly excited for the opportunity.
Q: If it does happen, how much would that check off a goal for what you guys were trying to accomplish this season? Would it make your season a success?
A: I don't know if we'd say that. It's certainly a goal for us to make playoffs, but we're confident in our ability as a team, and we believe we're a good team. We're just going to keep focusing one week at a time and play as well as we can.
Q: You have the fewest interceptions of any starting quarterback in the NFL this year. What does that mean to you considering where you came from in that statistic two, three years ago?
A: I think I've improved in some of those decision-making situations. Protecting the ball is a big part of the game at this position. I'll try to keep doing that as well as I can. But a lot of credit to our group – I think when you protect the ball, that's a group thing. We've got to be on the same page, a lot of trust in the receivers being in the right spots. They've done a good job doing that, and good job with the coaches also.
Q: You shouldered the blame when it was the other way. You say protecting the ball is a group thing, but when it wasn't protecting the ball, it all fell on you. Is that just the way the quarterback is?
A: I think that's part of it. The quarterback is responsible for decision-making. It goes both ways.
Q: Is there anything about this particular staff where you felt like you clicked either early on or where they've especially helped you grow as a quarterback?
A: I've really enjoyed working with them. I think Dabs (head coach Brian Daboll), Kaf (offensive coordinator Mike Kafka), (quarterbacks coach) Shea (Tierney) – all those guys have helped me out a lot. I think just understanding the game, understanding football, learning this system. I think this is a good system. As we said from the beginning, you can tell this is a quarterback-friendly system where the quarterback is in good position to make good decisions most of the time. I've enjoyed (it), I've learned a ton from them.
Q: You call it, 'quarterback-friendly,' but a lot of people would call it 'conservative,' just in the way you guys have thrown the ball. I think the longest pass you guys threw the ball the other day was 12-yards down the field. Do you ever kind of look around and say, 'I wish I was throwing the ball around a little bit more. I wish I could take deeper shots.' Anything like that, or are you just happy with the way things are?
A: It depends on the game and the way it plays out. We're certainly going to be aggressive when we can. But we won the game, and that's the goal. That's what we're focused on.
Q: Are you happy you don't have to ever hear those questions about the primetime games anymore?
A: (Laughs) It was a big win for us, and I didn't put too much stock in that to begin with.
Q: What's most different about this system? You talked about it's different and leaves decision-making in your hands. Is that the biggest difference from other systems you've been in?
A: I think that's part of it. We've talked a lot about the versatility of it and different options in certain situations to put us all in a position to make plays and adjust to what the defense is doing.
Q: When a new receiver like Isaiah (Hodgins) comes in as late as he does, how do you find the chemistry?
A: A lot of it is conversation. Watching film and the work you do in the meeting room, talking through things, getting an idea of how he sees things and how I see things. He knew the system really well coming from Buffalo; it's similar there, so the concepts were familiar. It was a lot just about conversation and talking through how we saw certain situations. The time on the field is important, too, during practice. A lot of credit to him. He's done a great job for us.
Q: How would you describe what (wide receiver) Richie (James) has done? He had a very good start to the season. (Wide receiver) Wan'Dale (Robinson) came back, and he kind of took a backseat. Now, the last three, four weeks, he's been prominent again in the offense. How would you describe what he's done for this team this season?
A: He's been really big for us. He's made a lot of key plays. He made some key plays the other night on critical downs. He's just extremely consistent day-to-day. You know exactly what you're going to get from him. His approach has been really good. As a quarterback, you like working with those guys. He's stepped-up time and time again. He deserves a lot of credit.
Q: What do you make from that Minnesota tape from watching? There was such a big disparity in the two halves from last week for them. What do you make of this team when you look at that?
A: I think they got in some tough situations in that first half. But they're a good team, they're a good defense. They've got a lot of key veteran players who have played a lot of football who are smart and understand how the offense is trying to attack them. We'll be prepared for that and have a plan for it —but they're a good group.
Q: I assume from that, you're kind of referencing (Minnesota Vikings cornerback Patrick) Peterson and (Minnesota Vikings safety) Harrison Smith and those kind of guys?
A: Yeah, I think those guys. They've got some guys up front that are veterans and good players as well. I think at all three levels they have good veteran players.
Q: Do you think you personally have learned how to win games? Maybe your numbers are better if I go back to even your rookie year, but do you feel like you learned how to win games and maybe not always fill up the box scores?
A: I think each game's different. But I think I've gotten a better idea of what does win in the NFL. A lot of times, it's not what you would think. I think it has a lot to do with taking care of the ball, staying in good situations for the offense, executing on critical downs and scoring in the red zone. But I think I've improved a lot since my rookie year.