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QB battles: Dolphins' Fitzpatrick leading Rosen, Giants' Manning beating Jones

By
Alex Butler
New York Giants veteran Eli Manning (C) and rookie Daniel Jones (R) are in a battle to be the team's starting quarterback this season after the franchise drafted Jones in the first round of the 2019 NFL Draft. Photo by John Angelillo/UPI
New York Giants veteran Eli Manning (C) and rookie Daniel Jones (R) are in a battle to be the team's starting quarterback this season after the franchise drafted Jones in the first round of the 2019 NFL Draft. Photo by John Angelillo/UPI | License Photo

July 31 (UPI) -- Miami Dolphins coach Brian Flores said it's clear Ryan Fitzpatrick is leading Josh Rosen in the quarterback competition. New York Giants veteran Eli Manning also has an early step on rookie Daniel Jones at training camp.

Jones -- the No. 6 overall pick in the 2019 NFL Draft -- through his first pick of training camp Tuesday. Jones also threw a touchdown, but completed fewer than 50 percent of his passes. Manning was much more accurate and threw two touchdown passes, without an interception.

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"[Manning's] training was just a little bit different than it's been [in the past], and I think he's really throwing the ball well," Giants coach Pat Schurmur told reporters. "When he came back for OTAs, we saw it. Some of it was physical, some of it was how he trained."

Shurmur said Manning can "pull the trigger quicker" within the offense as he knows what he's looking at and knows when he sees it because he has been in the system longer. The Giants are also working with less experienced wide receivers as the group has been decimated by injuries and suspensions, possibly giving another edge to Manning.

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Manning, 38, completed a career-high 66 percent of his throws for 4,299 yards, 21 scores and 11 interceptions in 16 starts last season. The Giants finished the year with a 5-11 record. Manning is playing on the final year of his contract.

A competition also is brewing at quarterback in South Florida, after the Dolphins brought in Fitzpatrick in free agency, before trading for Rosen. Fitzpatrick has outplayed his much-younger counterpart throughout the off-season and in training camp.

"I would say from a quarterback standpoint, it's pretty clear to me that Ryan Fitzpatrick is leading the way," Flores said Tuesday. "I think he's done that in a lot of areas from leadership to production on the field, in the meeting rooms, in the walkthroughs. I think this is an ongoing competition but right now, I'd say he's leading the way."

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Rosen admitted that Fitzpatrick can recognize defenses much quicker than he can.

"He obviously sees defenses in a blink of an eye," Rosen said of Fitzpatrick. "He's been playing for 15 or 16 years, so he can recognize defenses a lot quicker, and I'm trying to get to that level eventually. In terms of the offense, I came on a pretty even playing surface in camp."

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Fitzpatrick said he feels more comfortable with himself and with his game than he ever has during his career.

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