Baker Mayfield took the first shot, but his target would rather shrug it off than shoot back.
Mayfield, the Cleveland Browns’ outspoken second-year quarterback, gave his thoughts on New York Giants rookie quarterback Daniel Jones in a feature with “GQ.” He said it ”blows my mind” the Giants took Jones No. 6 overall and criticized the decision based on the rookie’s losing record at Duke.
Jones, more of the soft-spoken type, isn’t paying it much heed.
Jones shrugs off Mayfield’s criticism
Jones started as a walk-on and went 17-19 at Duke while taking a beating and watching receivers drop passes. In response to Mayfield’s comments about winning, Jones shouldered it himself.
"I wish we did win more games," Jones said about his time at Duke. "I played a big part in that, so I take responsibility for that. Our goal was always to win ACC championships and go to big bowl games and we weren't able to do that. I don't look back on that without a large responsibility for that."
No one should be surprised at the 22-year-old’s calm and casual response. Eli Manning and general manager Dave Gettleman have both praised Jones’ ability to handle it all, from boos at the draft to those at Yankee Stadium. Jones told reporters the comments wouldn’t change his approach:
"I think there's a lot of things that would motivate me before something like that would," said Jones. "I don't always show it, but I am a very passionate person."
Shurmur: Mayfield’s comments ‘not original’
Nothing Mayfield said was any different than the critiques streaming for weeks after the night of NFL Draft. Giants fans are still flabbergasted their team took Jones with the No. 6 overall pick, so head coach Pat Shurmur has already heard it.
"That's not original commentary, is it? We had a reason for why we did [draft him] and we do feel like he can help this team win. We've got a lot of reasons why Daniel is our quarterback. [Mayfield's] in a long line of people who criticized that move, so that's his business."
Fellow rookie Dexter Lawrence was also unfazed by the remarks. The defensive lineman out of Clemson requested to room with Jones at camp to block out criticism and said the quarterback “deserves a lot more respect than that.”
Engram takes lone shot at Mayfield
Tight end Evan Engram was the Giants player to take a shot back at Mayfield.
"There's two types of people in this world," Engram said, "There's people who run their mouths and cry for attention and there's people who put their head down, get to work and get stuff done. That's everything Daniel's been doing."
Mayfield clarified his remarks with an Instagram screenshot of a reply. He said the conversation started with him saying he was surprised he was picked No. 1 and it led to flaws in evaluating quarterbacks.
“Heard nothing but good things and wish the best for Daniel,” he wrote.
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