Micah Parsons, Daniel Jones
Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

There’s a lot to digest following the Giants‘ season-opening 40-0 loss to the Cowboys. But one of the many talking points of Sunday night’s debacle was, and still is, the decision to keep Daniel Jones on the field toward the end of regulation.

Even in the waning minutes with a 40-point deficit, head coach Brian Daboll played his starting quarterback until the final offensive drive. With unproven second-year man Josh Ezeudu playing left tackle because both Andrew Thomas and Matt Peart were hurt. And Jones was still taking hits.

A totally questionable move, and one that has even the opposition scratching its head.

“I don’t think Daniel Jones should’ve been in that game in the fourth quarter,” Cowboys star outside linebacker Micah Parsons said on his Bleacher Report show “The Edge” on Monday. “I thought they should’ve protected him and pulled him out, and barring injury, their season would be over without Daniel Jones.”

“I do not agree with Daniel Jones staying out there until that last drive [when backup Tyrod Taylor replaced him]. I thought that was wrong. I thought it was deceiving. That’s your franchise quarterback and he’s out there with a backup offensive line still getting sacked. I just didn’t understand — maybe it was a prove-it moment by the Giants? I have no idea. Or a learning lesson, who knows? But I thought Daniel Jones should’ve been pulled out.”

Daboll had a reason for playing Jones late into the fourth quarter, albeit not a very convincing one. He said after the game he tried to “get something positive going,” even with the game having been out of reach since essentially the first half. But even if the Giants did get a positive drive toward the end, what would that have done? Would losing by 33 instead of 40 seriously give this team momentum to bounce back in Week 2?

Parsons is right: If the Giants lose Jones, they lose the season. We’re sure this isn’t a playoff team anyway. But without Jones, it’s a five-win squad. So there should be no reason to keep him on the field that late in a 40-point game. Or even a 20-point game for that matter.

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