Tommy DeVito, an undrafted rookie quarterback, has become a cult hero for the New York Giants. In a season that looked lost, DeVito has become the starting quarterback for the team and proceeded to write his own Cinderella story by making the most of his opportunity with his play and the hand gesture he makes after the Giants score a touchdown.
DeVito is a New Jersey native, a real Jersey guy playing for a Jersey team, so his gesture only adds to the love fans have for him. He pinches his fingers together and rubs them after his team scores. He said it’s an homage to the way old Italians gesture when they talk. DeVito was not supposed to be the New York Giants’ starting quarterback, but injuries have pressed him into action. He was forced to step in as starting quarterback after injuries knocked out starter Daniel Jones and backup Tyrod Taylor.
DeVito’s story is that of a hometown boy making good because he is about as close to a hometown hero as it gets. Born in Livingston, New Jersey, DeVito grew up in Cedar Grove, about 10 miles from MetLife Stadium, where the Giants play. He attended high school at Don Bosco Prep, roughly 18 miles from the stadium. DeVito went to Syracuse University, where he played for four years before transferring to the University of Illinois for the 2022 season. He led the Fighting Illini to an 8-5 record while throwing 15 touchdowns and only four interceptions. He also ran for six touchdowns.
DeVito was not a top prospect when the NFL draft came around this past spring. He was signed by the Giants as an undrafted free agent and wound up on the team’s practice squad in August, shortly before the season kicked off. In late October, he was elevated to the active roster.
DeVito saw his first action in an NFL game when he came in during the Giants’ 13-10 loss to the New York Jets on Oct. 29. It was an inauspicious debut — DeVito went 2-for-7 passing for -1 yard in a rainy game that went to overtime, but he did run for his team’s lone touchdown. DeVito returned to the field the next week when he entered in relief of an injured Jones during the Giants’ 30-6 loss at the Las Vegas Raiders.
DeVito’s parents have also been in the news for their enthusiastic support of their son. Tommy DeVito’s story is one of perseverance and hard work. He has become a fan favorite for the New York Giants and has shown that with hard work and determination, anything is possible.