No, it’s not going to study hall. But there is still plenty of homework and time in the books, with Jones now having the time to fully study football.
From the speed of the game to the size of the players on both sides of the line to the complexity of the playbook, Jones is going to have to acclimate to playing on Sundays. The Giants’ first-round pick is liking one part of his new life: that there are no classes to attend.
The new schedule, says Jones, is a big boost for him as he looks to spend time understanding the playbook during Organized Team Activities (OTAs). There are no distractions such as mid-semester papers and final exams.
“Well, you don’t have to go to class – I think the time is probably the biggest thing,” Jones said. “You can be in the building all day and you can focus on what you need to focus on and the time constraint isn’t as restrictive.
“It is just more, everything is a lot more. We are installing more and as a rookie its more, it takes time. It’s all been good and I feel like I’m learning a lot.”
There is certainly a learning curve ahead for Jones, the presumptive heir to the Giants’ starting quarterback job. He will likely sit behind Eli Manning for this year as the veteran plays out the final year of his long-term contract with the Giants.
The assumption is that Jones could be ready to roll as the starter by 2021. The sixth overall pick is clearly going to be the starter at some point in the near future and the work towards that role starts in this offseason’s workouts.
His focus now, he says, is getting acclimated to the NFL. It isn’t on being the eventual starter for the Giants.
“I really haven’t to be honest,” the rookie said when asked about if he’s thought about someday being this team’s starter.
And while the on the field development is important, Jones right now needs to get caught up in the classroom. Unlike at Duke where he graduated with a degree in Economics, the classes aren’t prerequisites or business studies.
Here, he’s taking in a thick playbook and understanding new verbiage, all with the benefit of having more time in his daily schedule without having to balance courses. A lot of work, Jones admits, just so he can be ready to even practice.
“I think what you do with the script before practice, I think is something different, really studying that and preparing for your reps,” Jones said.“You really want to have an awareness of what everyone is doing. Just getting the script beforehand and understanding that preparing for that I think is different. I didn’t really do that a whole lot at Duke. Just kind of get out and run the play, but here, you’re preparing for that, you’re focusing your preparation based off the script.”