When Daniel Jones took off, Sterling Shepard knew.
The seven-yard touchdown scramble by Jones -- one of two Sunday for the rookie quarterback -- with 1:16 left in the fourth quarter completed the Week 3 comeback from down 18 points as the Giants pulled off the 32-31 win over the Buccaneers.
Shepard, who caught seven passes for 100 yards and a seven-yard touchdown pass to trim Tampa Bay's 28-25 lead, had the best seat in the house for the game-winning touchdown by Jones.
"I was running a route and I saw him hit the middle and was like, 'He's gone,'" Shepard said of Jones. "You guys see his wheels? That's something serious, something serious."
On fourth-and-five in the red zone, the Buccaneers rushed three and dropped eight into coverage. Jones took a three-step drop before he slid his way up the pocket.
As the man defense followed Shepard and other Giants receivers to each opposite sideline, Jones saw the field open before him and wasted no time.
"We were in a 3-by-1 set and just trying to spread some guys out there to the left and it kind of popped," said Jones, referencing the three targets lined up to the left with one on the right and a running back beside him out of the shotgun. "I just saw the crease in the middle and took it."
Before the eventual game-winning drive went 75 yards in eight plays, Jones spoke the victory into existence.
With 3:16 left to go, Jones commanded the huddle. Veterans such as Shepard immediately took notice as the No. 6 overall pick from the 2019 NFL draft in April came full circle.
"Daniel came in there and he was hyped up," Shepard said. "He hyped everybody else up and said, 'Let's go win this game, boys.' And that's what we did. The line did a great job protecting him, everybody did their job and take my hat off to all the other guys in the locker roiom. We kept fighting."
Giants from Shepard to head coach Pat Shurmur praised the electric debut by Jones, who made the replacement of 16th-year veteran Eli Manning seem easy. Jones completed completed 23 of 36 passes (63.9 percent) for 336 yards and two touchdowns to no interceptions on top of his four rushes for 28 yards and two touchdowns, and he was happy with the result, but his mind was on two mistakes.
"Probably take out the two fumbles and go from there," Jones said of what he needs to work on when his first home start at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey, rolls around next Sunday against the Washington Redskins. "You never really know how it's going to go. That's the fun part. That's football. We found a way to win, we battled and found a way to finish it, and that's what's the most exciting."