New York Giants Take Duke QB Daniel Jones at No. 6 - NBC New York

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New York Giants Take Duke QB Daniel Jones at No. 6

The Giants stunned many at the NFL draft by taking Daniel Jones of Duke with the sixth pick overall

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    New York Giants Take Duke QB Daniel Jones at No. 6
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    Daniel Jones #17 of the Duke Blue Devils rolls out against the Virginia Tech Hokies during their game at Wallace Wade Stadium on September 29, 2018 in Durham, North Carolina.

    The New York Giants have a surprising heir apparent to Eli Manning and a run-stopping successor to Snacks Harrison on the defensive line.

    The Giants stunned many at the NFL draft by taking quarterback Daniel Jones of Duke with the sixth pick overall, before turning to a glaring need on defense by selecting Clemson tackle Dexter Lawrence with the 17th pick overall.

    In the weeks leading up to the draft, many prognosticators felt the Giants would fill the defensive needs with the sixth pick and then turn their attention to quarterback at No. 17, the pick they got from Cleveland by trading wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr., perhaps targeting Dwayne Haskins of Ohio State or Drew Lock of Missouri.

    General manager Dave Gettleman had other thoughts. He first took Jones, who threw for 8,201 yards and 52 touchdowns in three years starting for Duke after joining the program as a walk-on, and then grabbed the 342-pound Lawrence with the second choice in the round.

    New York, which has won only eight games in the past two seasons, failed to address the desperate need for a pass rusher, electing to take Jones and passing on Kentucky linebacker Josh Allen, who had 17 sacks last season.

    Jones probably will spend his first season being an understudy for Manning, who is now 38 and in the final year of his $84 million contract.

    "Physically, I think I can make every throw on the field," said Jones, who also ran for 1,323 yards and 17 touchdowns in his college career. "My accuracy is a strength of mine and I have the athleticism to extend plays. I play outside the pocket if I need to. Physically, I can do both those things well."

    Jones was developed by David Cutcliffe, the same coach who groomed both Peyton and Eli Manning in college.

    Jones said he needs to improve his understanding of when to throw the ball away or dump it off to a back.

    Cutcliffe and Jones watched film of the Manning brothers and talked about their development.

    "Just hearing those stories and learning from some of those experiences was an awesome perspective for me and certainly a great situation," said Jones.

    Before the draft, Gettleman said he was in favor of using the Kansas City model in developing a new quarterback. The Chiefs hit a jackpot with Patrick Mahomes, letting him learn under Alex Smith until giving him the starting job last season.

    Expect the Giants to do that with Manning and Jones.

    While Manning's statistics aren't horrible, the Giants have made the playoffs once since winning the Super Bowl in February 2012.

    Manning's biggest flaw is his mobility. He is a solid pocket passer but lacks the ability to extend plays in coach Pat Shurmur's offense. The offensive line allowed 47 sacks last season.

    The 6-foot-5, 220-pound Jones is similar to Manning. He is a three-time ACC selection and was impressive in the Senior Bowl, winning MVP.

    Lawrence is massive in the middle, much like Harrison, who New York traded to Detroit last season. While Lawrence was a force in the middle for the national champions, he is not a pass rusher.

    He also has an item in his resume that might be a concern. Lawrence was suspended for last season's College Football Playoff for failing an NCAA test for performance-enhancing drugs.

    He said at the time he had no idea why he failed the test and Clemson coach Dabo Swinney said in February that it's possible the team could have unknowingly given him a supplement with the drug, though the school and NCAA were investigating.

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