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Duke in the NFL: Daniel Jones becomes a meme en route to loss

Daniel Jones is the Giants leading rusher this season after star running back Saquon Barkley nabbed a season-ending injury.
Daniel Jones is the Giants leading rusher this season after star running back Saquon Barkley nabbed a season-ending injury.

Duke’s prized NFL star became the laughingstock of the league while the seasons for other Blue Devil pros kept rolling on during the NFL’s Week 7.

Daniel Jones, QB, New York Giants

This ex-Duke star was in the news for all the wrong reasons over the weekend. One quick glance at the statline would suggest he had a fine game Thursday night in a tight loss against Philadelphia: he completed two-thirds of his passes and added two touchdown passes in his first multi-touchdown game since week one. He also put on a show with his legs, gaining a career-high 92 yards on four carries. 

However, the big run yardage—most of which came on an 80 yard keeper—was instantly transformed into a meme before anyone could appreciate the speed of the second-year quarterback from Charlotte. With plenty of running room, Jones saw the endzone and cranked up the speed one notch too high, leaving him tumbling to the turf eight yards short of the end zone. The all-time blooper was the longest run by a quarterback who didn’t score on the play since before 1975. His top speed of 21.2 miles per hour was the fastest recorded by a quarterback in the last two seasons (yes, even faster than Ravens star Lamar Jackson). 

Even though the Giants found paydirt on that drive, the fourth quarter was less than miraculous. A week after finally winning their first game of the season, the Giants surrendered a 21-10 lead they held well into the final quarter and Jones fumbled the ball for the fifth time this season with only 40 seconds left down by a point. 

Jones also found his name in the news over the weekend due to a video which appears to show the quarterback along with injured running back Saquon Barkley violating league COVID-19 rules and partying at a bar without masks. It is unclear what form of disciplinary action the players will face.

Jamison Crowder, WR, New York Jets

For the second time this season, the Jets’ leading receiver found himself injured with the possibility of missing multiple weeks. After suffering a groin injury in Wednesday’s practice, the Duke product got limited reps on Friday and was ruled out prior to Sunday’s game against Buffalo. 

Quarterback Sam Darnold returned from a shoulder injury, but without Crowder, who had strung together three successful outings after recovering from a hamstring injury, the winless Jets were again unable to create much offensively in an 18-10 loss. 

Crowder underwent medical evaluation Monday and hopes to return to the field—and stay on the field—prior to the team’s week 10 bye.

Lucas Patrick, G, Green Bay Packers

Patrick and the Packers’ offensive line showed their strength yet again Sunday in a much needed bounce-back win against Houston. The line stepped up their pass and run protection, not allowing a single sack of quarterback Aaron Rodgers after he was taken down four times by the Buccaneers last week. The unit also created more room for backup running back Jamaal Williams in place of Aaron Jones, who suffered a leg injury and missed the Texans game. 

Mark Gilbert, CB, Duke

The latest Duke player to enter the professional ranks is still on campus. Fifth-year cornerback Mark Gilbert announced Monday that he is opting out of the remainder of this college season to recover from a procedure he underwent in September to remove a loose bone fragment from his foot. Gilbert has dealt with a seemingly never-ending carousel of injuries—he has played in only four games since the beginning of the 2018 season. In 2017, Gilbert was an All-ACC pick after intercepting six passes and defending 15 total. With only 29 games under his belt over five years at Duke, the 23-year-old is relying on a small sample of high level play to gain NFL teams’ attention in next April’s draft.


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