Inside the mind of Giants’ Jake Fromm before his first NFL start

Second-year QB Jake Fromm, who was signed off the Bills’ practice squad last month when Daniel Jones was hurt, huddles with columnist Steve Serby for some Q&A before making his first start Sunday.

Q: Describe your leadership style.

A: I’d say vocal. … It can be whatever it needs to be. If it’s person-to-person, different people respond to different things. My leadership style is versatile.

Q: What is Jake Fromm like in the huddle?

A: A guy who’s confident, a guy who knows what he’s doing. And a guy who will look you in the eyes and care for you and want the best interests of everybody in that huddle.

Q: In what way or ways does Jake Fromm have the “It” factor?

A: He’s a guy who loves the game, loves to compete, loves to win. A guy who loves his teammates and a guy who just loves being out there and playing ball.

Q: Georgia coach Kirby Smart said this about you: “He’s a chip-on-his-shoulders guy.”

A: I was never the tallest quarterback, I was never the fastest, never had the strongest arm, but I’m a guy who is determined and who will get it done any way possible, and that’s just me.

Jake Fromm will make his first NFL start for the Giants on Sunday.
Robert Sabo

Q: Can you improve your arm strength?

A: I think you can. It’s not ever an overnight thing. There might be a slight cap on it, but I think you can always get slightly better in every aspect.

Q: From your Twitter feed: “I don’t work to prove the haters wrong, I work to prove those I love right.”

A: It’s really about those I love and those who love me and supported me. They believe in me, and I thank them for believing in me, and I want to prove them right, whatever that is.

Q: What is it about big games that you like?

A: Just big atmospheres. Big games I think just brings out the best in everybody. It’s just an opportunity to go out and show what you’re made of.

Q: What is the biggest obstacle you’ve had to overcome?

A: I think it’s just something I always had to earn. I think every year I always have to go out and prove myself each and every year, each and every play, each and every down.

Q: What criticism has bothered you the most over the years?

A: You’re gonna get criticism for walking the wrong way or chewing gum the wrong way. So it doesn’t really matter. For me, it’s just noise. So you listen to those you love and those who love you and all will be OK. I know what my father in heaven says about me, and I’m one of His children, I love Him and He loves me, and no matter what I can lay my head on the pillow and be fine with that at night.

Q: Another one of your quotes: “If it doesn’t challenge you, it won’t change you.”

A: Learned that one from Coach Smart. I’m always looking to get better. You gotta put yourself in an uncomfortable situation so you can really test yourself, really thrive.

Q: One more: “Storms don’t always come to disrupt your life; sometimes they come to clear your path.”

A: I believe that one came after church one day. I think I was listening to someone. They said that. I thought it was awesome. Sometimes things are put in your life, it’s a negative, but not everything’s a negative. I’m a positive person, and I want to look on the bright side of things. Some things are made to come, made to happen to get some things out of your life and clear things up.

Q: Describe your on-field mentality.

A: Confident, quick decision-maker, a guy who can move the chains and score points.

Q: What drives you?

A: I love the game, I love hanging out with the guys and just get to spend time with them. It’s a child’s game, and we get to go out to play it and have fun. I play because I think God really gave me some gifts to play the game of football and I want to fulfill those gifts to the best of my ability and glorify Him the best way I can. I play for my family back home who’s supported me so much growing up by taking me to baseball tournaments, football games and whatnot … just play for everybody.

Giants Jake Fromm
Jake Fromm (#17) during Thursday’s Giants practice ahead of his first NFL start.
Charles Wenzelberg/New York Post

Q: What is your best single football moment?

A: I was thankful to play in a lot of big games in high school, in college, and hopefully soon, one day in this league.

Q: Was the national championship game loss as a freshman to Tua Tagovailoa and Alabama after the 2017 season your most bitter defeat?

A: That one doesn’t feel good. I think it would have been an awesome feat, not only for me, my family, but just for our team and the university and the state as a whole and Dawg Nation as a whole. It is what it is, and you can’t change the past.

Q: Describe your win at Notre Dame in your first start as a freshman.

A: I just think back to just a night game, unreal atmosphere, just a lot of like culture in that game. It’s Notre Dame, it’s on the road, to come back home with a win, I think it was a really big changing point not only in my career, but for that season and what we were able to do that season.

Q: Whatever comes to mind: Bills Mafia?

A: Awesome and crazy.

Q: Josh Allen?

A: Great teammate, great football player.

Q: Bills-Patriots rivalry?

A: Go with bitter.

Q: Andrew Thomas?

A: He always has your back literally and figuratively, and I’m just thankful he’s on my team.

Jake Fromm
Jake Fromm (#11) playing for Georgia against Alabama in the 2018 College Football Playoff national championship game.
Getty Images

Q: Another former Georgia teammate, Azeez Ojulari?

A: Azeez has a secret weapon we call vibranium. He’s got some superhuman strength and he uses it, and he uses it well. It was a joke at Georgia.

Q: Facing Xavier McKinney?

A: In high school, we had 7-on-7 against each other. In college, he plays for Alabama and now he’s here. Man, he’s just a ball hawk in the backfield. Man, he just really has a big nose for the ball, he’s always around it. A guy who generates turnovers, and he’s just always in the right place at the right time.

Q: Saquon Barkley?

A: He’s got an awesome competitive spirit, a guy that flies around and makes plays. Some of the things I’ve seen from him and him do and plays he’s made already just makes Saquon, Saquon, and that’s why he is who he is.

Q: Kenny Golladay?

A: Big, physical guy. A guy who can go up, make plays, and excited to get to know him more and feed him when we can.

Q: The Falcons blowing a 28-3 lead to the Patriots in Super Bowl LI?

A: (Chuckle) As a Georgia fan, heartbreaking.

Q: The Braves winning the World Series?

A: As a Georgia fan, heartwarming.

Q: If you could test your skills against any cornerback in NFL history, who would it be?

A: I’d say if I can complete a ball, complete certain throws on Deion Sanders, I’d say I could do it on just about anybody.

Q: If you could pick the brain of any quarterback in NFL history?

A: For me I think it’s kind of a trifecta of Peyton Manning, Tom Brady and Drew Brees.

Q: Boyhood idols?

A: Baseball-wise it was Chipper Jones. Football-wise it was Peyton Manning, Tom Brady, Brett Favre.

Q: Do you think you could have become a major league player?

A: I don’t know. … I’d like to think so. I wasn’t too bad. I think it woulda been a long road, but who knows? You never know.

Q: As a pitcher or as a hitter?

A: Probably as a hitter. These guys pitching now — the hundred [mph] is the new 90. I don’t know if I coulda hit a hundred.

Q: What did you hit?

A: I kind of slowed down on pitching. I was around 14, but I believe I could hit 86, 87 at 14.

Q: What was your favorite Williamsport Little League moment?

A: We played a really big game against a hometown team there in Pennsylvania, the night game, had a huge crowd. That was just a really big-time game. That was just awesome, the first time as a young kid playing in front of that many people. And then I think it was just really neat and cool to hang out with all the other kids there from around the world, different cultures, different languages. We were all there having fun and spending time with guys we grew up with. Just a neat experience.

Q: Describe your mother.

A: Love my mom, best mom in the world. I wouldn’t be anything without her. The love she has for me and my brothers is second to none.

Q: Your father?

A: I can’t thank my dad enough for pushing me, driving me to be who I am. Big thank you for driving me all over the country, to this camp, that camp, and just believing in me and pushing me, and always being there.

Q: Your wife?

A: She loves me, she pushes me, she drives me to be the best me I could be. I love her to death and I just can’t wait to spend the rest of my life with her.

Q: Pastor Jerry Wells?

A: One of the best men God put on this earth. He just touches your heart the way he speaks, the way he walks, the way he carries himself. He’s a guy who had just so much influence on my life, my family. I can’t thank him enough.

Q: How good is a Fromm Burger?

A: (Laugh) Really good, really good. They can ship ’em out to you anywhere, so you should order one.

Q: A quote from you: “A bad day fishing beats a good day of anything else.”

A: That one’s pretty to the point. I love to be outside and hunt and fish and man, when you’re out there on the water, things are all right.

Q: Are you a better quarterback, fisherman or hunter?

A: My brother [Dylan] can beat me pretty good in the fish realm. … [Brother] Tyler’s pretty good in the woods. I’d say hunting and quarterback are pretty tit-for-tat there.

Q: What do you love to hunt best?

A: Love ducks, love to deer hunt, love to turkey hunt. It’s something we can do as football players a lot more of.

Q: No preference of the three?

A: Of those three, I would go duck hunting.

Q: Any favorite New York City things yet?

A: Me and my wife went on Tuesday, we went kind of strolling shopping down Fifth Avenue, and got to eat dinner. Went to Patrizia’s in Brooklyn.

Q: Who recommended that?

A: It was a close family friend that came to the game and found it for us. We went Sunday night, and it was awesome.

Q: Three dinner guests?

A: Jesus Christ, George Washington, Ronald Reagan.

Q: Favorite movie?

A: “Talladega Nights.”

Q: Favorite actor?

A: Matthew McConaughey.

Q: Favorite actress?

A: Margot Robbie.

Q: Favorite singer/entertainer?

A: Luke Bryan, Luke Combs, Morgan Wallen.

Q: Favorite meal?

A: A good old steak and baked potato.

Q: New Year’s resolutions?

A: I haven’t really thought much about this at all. Looking forward to spend time with my wife, my family. And try to hunt a little bit.

Q: Where would you do that?

A: I got a guy in South Jersey, my secret weapon. I can’t tell anybody about him.

Q: Can you envision yourself playing 10 years in the NFL?

A: Yeah, I can. I think I’m well-equipped for it, mentally, physically and I love it, and I hope I can.

Q: What kind of a career do you envision for yourself?

A: Hopefully, a career where I can decide when I’m done and not the other way around.

Q: How do you feel about playing in the big New York downstate market?

A: I think it’s awesome. Wherever you’re blessed enough to be able to play football at this level, one, it’s a blessing, and two, it’s an awesome time. As a guy from the south, especially in Georgia, I never really envisioned myself being in New York. But man, it’s an awesome place, got so much history, so much culture, got great people here. It’s awesome, this is New York City, this is the city in the United States. Man, this is it, doesn’t get any bigger than this.