For six seasons, Mike Tanenbaum was the general manager of the New York Jets and has been around the NFL since 1994. While he has a personal connection to the city of New York, there is no love lost between him and the current quarterbacks of the area in Daniel Jones and Zach Wilson.
In his latest article for the 33rd Team, Tanenbaum rated both the Giants’ Jones and the Jets’ Wilson in the lowest tier (seventh) of current quarterbacks in the NFL.
Tanenbaum said his lowest tier is for those “players [who] are at a time in their career where they must show the talent that caused them to be drafted in the first or second round.”
Quarterbacks like Drew Lock, Marcus Mariota, Mitchell Trubisky, and former-Jet Sam Darnold are in the lowest tier as well.
In the sixth tier, the one above where Jones and Wilson, players like Tua Tagovailoa, Davis Mills, and Jared Goff are listed as players “you can win with if the situation around them is ideal.”
Mills was drafted in the same draft as Wilson but in the third round.
While Mills’ numbers did look better on paper (16:10 touchdown-to-interception ratio) to Wilson’s (9:11), Pro Football Focus actually graded both players about the same.
PFF gave Wilson a grade of 59. Mills was given a 58.
Jones on the other hand is entering his fourth season with the Giants and hasn’t played a full 16 games yet in his career.
The Giants declined the fifth-year option on Jones saying “how can we give this kid the best chance, and [owner John Mara] has been vocal about Daniel [having] been through a couple of head coaches, several offensive coordinators. There’s been injuries to the offensive line and everything else.”
Jones played in only 11 games last season for the G-Men, throwing 10 touchdowns and 7 interceptions.
Jones had suffered a neck injury in week 12 that kept him out for the remainder of the year.
While Tanenbaum’s ranking of Jones seems fair citing the “waiting to see it” time frame, his comments about the lowest tier of quarterbacks being “reasonable to see the majority of these players not as the starting QB at some point within the season, or next season” is a surprise for a player like Wilson.
Wilson was taken as the second overall pick in last year’s draft. While showing flashes at times, it’s difficult to see an NFL team jump ship on a first-round pick after just two seasons.
Regardless, it is clear that both New York quarterbacks will have to do more to impress the eyes of Mike Tanenbaum and others around the league.