Baker Mayfield Daniel Jones
Baker Mayfield was as shocked as we were when the Giants drafted Daniel Jones. Mayfield doesn’t think Jones is a winner (Stacy Revere/Getty Images)

I think the entire world was shocked when the Giants drafted Daniel Jones with the 6th pick in the 2019 NFL Draft. I was highly critical of the move myself. Apparently, Baker Mayfield agrees. In a recent interview with GQ Magazine, Baker Mayfield couldn’t believe that the Giants drafted Daniel Jones. His reasoning why Jones will fail in the NFL makes a lot of sense.

Near our booth, a SportsCenter segment about the New York Giants catches Mayfield’s eye. “I cannot believe the Giants took Daniel Jones,” Mayfield says, about New York’s much-maligned draft-day decision to spend the sixth pick on the quarterback from Duke (whose college record was a measly 17–19). “Blows my mind.”

I tell Mayfield that I’m mystified that so many supposedly expert quarterback scouts seem unable to predict what makes a good NFL quarterback.

“Some people overthink it,” Mayfield says. “That’s where people go wrong. They forget you’ve gotta win.”

It’s not hard to sense that Mayfield is reflecting on his own history now. Despite compiling a 39–9 record in college, he faced a chorus of criticism before the draft. Those past slights are buried in a shallow grave. (A Browns teammate, Joel Bitonio, tells me that Mayfield plays with “the mentality of proving everybody who’s ever said something negative about him wrong.”)

To Mayfield, the characteristics of a great quarterback are simple. “Either you have a history of winning and being that guy for your team,” he says, “or you don’t.” (via GQ)

I would say there is something to Mayfield’s madness. Deshaun Watson is probably the biggest winner in college football in recent years. He’s a much better quarterback than Mitch Trubisky who was drafted ahead of him. Then again, there’s a lot of quarterbacks who won a lot college and stink in the NFL. Marcus Mariota, Tim Tebow, and Sam Bradford are recent examples. Then there are quarterbacks who didn’t win in college but are very successful in the NFL. Patrick Mahomes, Matt Ryan, and Aaron Rodgers are recent examples. I would say his reasoning is important but just a piece to the puzzle.

I’ll also say this. I thought it was crazy that the Browns picked Baker Mayfield with the first pick in the draft. There were a lot of red flags. However, there’s still reason to think he could make it. Mayfield put up big passing numbers at Oklahoma. With Daniel Jones, this one goes down in banana land. There’s almost nothing you can point to that says Jones deserves to be a first round pick. I mean NOTHING. Jones never won at Duke. Jones’ career completion percentage mark is under 60 percent. Jones never threw for 3,000 yards. Jones threw for more than 20 touchdowns just once. His tools are very average. The Giants picked the guy that resembles Eli Manning the most in the draft class. That was literally the only reason.

I don’t hate this move by Mayfield, but I also don’t love it. Tom Brady would never do this. He would say that Daniel Jones has Peyton Manning potential. He loves killing people with kindness. It’s worked for a billion years in a row. However, I love the fact that somebody was honest about Daniel Jones. This guy stinks. He’s going to tank the Giants franchise for the next 5 years.