GIANTS speed machine Darcy Jones has been named the AFL’s Telstra Rising Star nominee for round 17 after his eye-catching performance in Saturday’s huge win over Carlton.  

Playing just his fifth AFL game, Jones was one of the GIANTS’ best as he showcased his blistering pace and elite agility to play a starring role in the club’s thrilling 12-point win over Carlton at ENGIE Stadium on Saturday night.  

The electric small forward finished Saturday’s clash with 18 touches, a now trademark running goal, seven score involvements, four marks, four inside-50s and a number of brilliant defensive efforts.

The impressive display was Jones’ first game at AFL level since round 10 following a hamstring injury, with the 20-year-old earning his way back into the side after two starring VFL performances following his rehab.  

Jones’ Rising Star nomination comes following a tough start to his AFL journey, with the exciting youngster forced to miss almost his entire debut season last year following an ACL injury suffered in April, after being taken with pick 21 by the GIANTS in the 2022 Draft.

The talented West Australian was on track to make his long-awaited debut early this season before swelling in his knee and a bout of tonsilitis on the eve of the season further delayed his AFL debut.  

Finally fit and firing, Jones returned to the field through the early stages of the VFL season where he thrilled across three games to finally break through for his AFL debut where he shone with 15 touches and two goals in the club’s big win over the Lions on ANZAC Day in round seven.  

Playing four straight games following his brilliant debut, Jones injured his hamstring in round 10 against the Bulldogs before returning to the field through the VFL followed by Saturday’s brilliant AFL return against the Blues on Saturday night.  

Standing at just 175cm tall, Jones’ eye-catching speed and agility - as well as his orange and charcoal helmet - have quickly made him a fan favourite amongst not only the Orange Army but fans across the competition.  

Highlighting the club’s excitement surrounding the small forward, Jones was signed to a two-year contract extension last year before he had played a game for the club to tie him to the GIANTS until at least the end of 2026.

GIANTS Executive General Manager of Football, Jason McCartney, said Jones’ Rising Star nomination was well deserved.    

“It’s fantastic to see Darcy rewarded with a Rising Star nomination after a great performance in what was a huge win for the club on Saturday night,” McCartney said.    

“He has obviously had some early hurdles in his career after missing most of his first season with an ACL, but to his credit he’s worked extremely hard to get back and he’s already shown what an exciting talent he is. 

“He has blistering speed and agility but the pressure that he applies on the opposition and the composure he shows are also at a very high level and it’s exciting what he can develop into at our footy club. 

Jones is the club’s second Rising Star nominee of the season, following first year forward Harvey Thomas’ nomination in round 14.