Daniel Jones
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New York Giants rookie quarterback Daniel Jones says New England Patriots’ Super Bowl 38 win was “heartbreaking” for him.

Daniel Jones, prior to becoming the newest quarterback for the New York Giants, experienced his upbringing in Charlotte, North Carolina. Thus, he was a Carolina Panthers fan, witnessing their first Super Bowl appearance in February of 2004 when he was six years old.

Ironically, the Panthers faced the same quarterback he’ll be facing Thursday night.

Tom Brady and the Pats ousted Carolina by a score of 32-29, topped off by a 41-yard go-ahead field goal by Adam Vinatieri with four seconds left in regulation. Having observed that moment from the non-celebrating perspective, Jones reflects on how disappointed he felt.

“I remember where I watched it. Went to a friend’s house. The Dickens’ house. A family friend,” Jones said, per Jordan Raanan of ESPN. “Obviously it was heartbreaking when Vinatieri made that field goal.”

Now, the Giants rookie will compete against the quarterback who won his first Super Bowl when Jones was just four years old. Ultimately, he has high acclaim for the quarterback he’s seen since he was a kid.

“Grew up watching him. Obviously he’s won a lot, achieved a lot in his career,” Jones said. “So a lot of respect for that.”

Jones will have a difficult task on Thursday night, arguably the toughest one he’ll have all season.

The Patriots are at the top of the league in total yards allowed-per-game (238.4) and in points allowed-per-game (6.8). New England’s defense is additionally yet to allow a touchdown pass this season.

The 22-year-old starting quarterback will also be without numerous weapons on Thursday night. Sterling Shepard (concussion), Saquon Barkley (ankle), Evan Engram (knee), and Wayne Gallman (concussion) have all been ruled out.

The Giants and Patriots will kick off in Foxborough, MA at 8:20 p.m. ET on Thursday Night Football on FOX.

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Ryan Honey is a staff writer and host of the Wide Right Podcast.