NASHVILLE – Daniel Jones has the same college coach, a similar demeanor and even looks the part.
So if he ends up landing with the Giants and learning from Eli Manning as his introduction to the NFL, that would be just fine by him.
“That’d be awesome. I’d be extremely excited about that,” the Duke quarterback said Wednesday at Nissan Stadium, on the eve of the NFL draft. “The opportunity to learn from a guy like Eli, to watch him, the way he carries himself day in and day out, would be a tremendous learning opportunity for a young guy. That’d be an awesome situation.”
Jones spent four years at Duke playing under coach David Cutcliffe – the same coach Eli Manning had at Ole Miss and Peyton Manning had as an offensive coordinator at Tennessee. Cutcliffe recently told The Post’s Steve Serby that Jones thinks like Peyton and is mentally tough like Eli.
Asked about the comparisons to the Super Bowl-winning brothers, Jones didn’t shy away.
“Those are two guys that have done it just as well as, if not better than, anyone else. I hope I have some of that,” Jones said. “Playing-wise, we’ve certainly been coached similarly in college and Coach Cut, it’s fun to listen to him coach those guys when they come back and hearing a lot of the same things. Through that, I’ve developed some of those tendencies. We’ll see. I have my own characteristics that make me who I am. I’m certainly confident in that.”
Jones has already seen Eli work up close when the Giants quarterback has trained at Duke with Cutcliffe in the offseason. He has gotten the chance to pick Eli’s brain and see how he communicates with teammates.
Then there were Jones’ two trips to the Manning Passing Academy, where he learned more about how Peyton and Eli carry themselves beyond football.
“I’ve always felt like just being around them and watching how they carry themselves, the humility and joy and kindness they have for people in the position that they’re in is something that has always impressed me a lot,” Jones said.