NFL

Tyrod Taylor could start the regular season finale for the Giants

Tyrod Taylor could start the regular season finale for the Giants

If the Giants call up quarterback Tyrod Taylor for his 54th career start Sunday, he’ll have something to win and prove.

Early indications are that the Giants plan to sit key starters (some have already been announced, a source told The Post, despite coach Brian Daboll saying otherwise), which could create a situation for Taylor to replace Daniel Jones for a day.

Taylor, 33, learned five years ago that performance with the Bills guarantees nothing when Buffalo became the rare team to switch quarterbacks after the playoffs. So he doesn’t see a game against the Eagles, who have nothing to gain in the playoff picture, as meaningless.

“I’m always up for the opportunity, but obviously that’s Coach Dabes’ decision,” Taylor told The Post. “As a player, every time you have a chance to compete, you’re representing your last name but more importantly, you’re representing the organization, so it never makes sense. It’s a proven league. Any chance you get to show what you can do, you have to take it seriously.”

Tyrod Taylor, left, could get the start for Daniel Jones on Sunday.
Getty Images

Taylor went 22-20 as the Bills’ starter from 2015-17. In the final of those wins, he threw for 204 yards and a touchdown to beat the Dolphins in a must-win season finale that helped steal a playoff spot. But after the first-round loss, the Bills moved on from Taylor, trading him and then drafting Josh Allen.

“My time there was over, for whatever reason,” Taylor said Thursday when asked to reflect on the trade. “Without a doubt, I am proud to have done a lot in the three years there. I was able to help lead an organization that went 17 years without a relegation.

“I was definitely surprised, but every time you have one [first-year] coach and general manager, you never know and you have to prepare for the worst. I’ve played long enough now to condition myself not to be surprised by anything and to control the things you can control. At that time, coming into a good year, I was as sure of myself as ever, and I still am.”

This season, Jones repeated Taylor’s feat by leading the Giants to an unexpected playoff appearance, their second in 11 seasons. Jones will be a free agent after the season, and Taylor had one year remaining on his contract when he was traded to the Browns to fill in for rookie Baker Mayfield.

None of the parallels will be lost on the first-year Giants pairing of Daboll and general manager Joe Schoen, who was the Bills’ assistant general manager when he risked making a move with a new quarterback in 2018 after making the playoffs ahead of schedule. for the opportunity to make a long-term leap.

Tyrod Taylor could start the regular season finale for the Giants
Giants quarterback Daniel Jones speaks to the media on Wednesday.
Robert Sabo/New York Post
Daniel Jones is a free agent after this season.
Daniel Jones is a free agent after this season.
Robert Sabo/New York Post

“We surprised a lot of people in Buffalo [in 2017]not just in the league, but in our building,” Taylor said. “I think Daniel has shown that [he is the quarterback here]. He has competed at a high level and sets the team up for success every week. You can never get into the minds of the people making the decisions. The moment you try to do that is when you lose focus as a player.’

Taylor, who signed a two-year, $11 million contract last season, is the only Giants quarterback with contract peace next season.

A mishandled rib injury by the Chargers in Week 3 of the 2020 season ended Taylor’s time ahead of rookie Justin Herbert. Last season, a nasty hamstring injury in Week 2 allowed the Texans to turn to rookie Davis Mills. A concussion in Week 4 this season forced Taylor out of his only significant action behind Jones.

“Sometimes it’s a harsh reality,” Taylor said, “but those are opportunities to learn and get out of unfortunate and difficult situations.”

The Giants are one of 11 of 32 teams that have used the same starting quarterback through the first 16 games this season. Taylor replaced Jones in the middle of a series last week that allowed Jones to get a standing ovation in the playoff-clinching victory.

“Tyrod is a great piece for that quarterback room,” offensive coordinator Mike Kafka said. “It helps not only the players but also the coaches. I rely on him and his experience. It’s a great asset.”

The Giants could turn to Davis Webb or a combination of Taylor and Webb.

“I’m a big fan of all of our guys in this locker room,” Taylor said. “We put in the work and we had a special year.”



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