NY Giants’ Daniel Jones sidesteps questions about dining maskless with teammates

Daniel Jones(Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
Daniel Jones(Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /

NY Giants QB Daniel Jones declined to answer questions about being seen on video dining out without a mask

NY Giants quarterback Daniel Jones was seen on video dining in Manhattan, and out and about without a mask last Friday along with running back Saquon Barkley and several teammates, but Thursday sidestepped questions about the incident.

“Certainly respect the question and acknowledge the importance of it,” Jones said following Thursday’s practice. “But, coach spoke about it the other day, and we have a way of handling those things. We’re going to handle it internally here. Our focus is on the Buccaneers this week and being prepared to play Monday night.”

Jones said that he’s talked to Giants head coach Joe Judge and that any discipline for the incident would be handled internally.

There is a modicum of doubt cast over the Giants’ game Monday against the Buccaneers at MetLife Stadium, after Giants left guard Will Hernandez tested positive for COVID-19 and was one of eight players sent home to isolate Thursday, along with two coaches.

Giants head coach Joe Judge said Thursday that he does not believe that Hernandez came in close contact with Jones, Barkley or any of the players that had dined out without masks last week.

Practice squad wide receiver Binjimin Victor was one of the players allegedly out and about with Jones, Barkley and teammates Friday, and Victor was also reportedly absent from Thursday’s practice.

It can take up to four days for an individual to carry a significant enough viral load to test positive, while there have been many instances of individuals being contagious prior to testing positive themselves. At best, Jones and Barkley being out without a mask was terrible optics for the players and the organization in the midst of a deadly pandemic. At worst, their actions might have hastened the spread of the virus.

Jones is the NY Giants’ captain, the team’s leader, and a role model to countless fans young and old. When asked whether he regrets the incident or not wearing a mask while dining indoors, Jones deflected responsibility or accountability for the incident.

“I had PPE and certainly have to make sure I’m wearing it,” Jones said. “But, we’re not going to comment any more on it. Coach has certainly addressed it.”

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Matt Lombardo is the site expert for GMenHQ, and writes Between The Hash Marks each Wednesday for FanSided. Follow Matt on Twitter: @MattLombardoNFL.