The once proud New York Giants organization is in a downward spiral. Its been too many years since Big Blue has had both a head coach and general manager they could count on.
The New York Giants are not supposed to be in this position. Other than Ray Handley they have had a steady run of at least average to slightly above average coaches the last 30 years or so. Bill Parcells, the Handley error, Dan Reeves, Jim Fassel, and the Tom Coughlin regime accounted for four Super Bowl wins. Additionally, Fassel led them to a Super Bowl loss, and Reeves was a respected coach with his own Super Bowl appearances in Denver.
Since then Ben McAdoo with his middle school bowl cut and Pat Shurmur have run a proud franchise into the ground. The defense fell apart, Eli Manning decomposed, they botched the Manning benching and backtracked a week later alienating both fans and players, and now the entire roster has imploded. This was stuff that happened to the Jets or Redskins or Browns, not the New York Giants.
To be fair, the two most recent general managers Jerry Reese and Dave Gettleman have more than added to the team’s issues. Reese couldn’t evaluate talent or manage the salary cap, which is not a great look if those are your sole responsibilities. Gettleman seems to think the team is playing in the 1980s and that downfield passes are something you do once every three games.
If the Giants let Gettleman choose the next coach when they fire Shurmur my guess is he’ll try for Buddy Ryan, find out he’s dead. Then Gettleman would try to get ahold of Joe Gibbs and be dumbfounded when he finds out Gibbs is part of NASCAR.
So where do they go now? The G-Men should be cleaning house. Gettleman, Shurmur and their staffs need to go. Bring in Scott Fitterer as GM, who learned under the leagues best, John Schneider of Seattle. I doubt they would get permission from Dallas, but if they could bring in Kris Richard as a head coach with a strong and experienced offensive coordinator, it would be the core of a solid coaching staff.
Richard has done an excellent job as a defensive coordinator in Seattle and then as a secondary coach in Dallas. The 40-year-old has an ability to connect with and motivate players. He has shown he can get results from stars, role players, as well as develop talent.
That’s a lot of Seahawks alumni, but a case can be made that in a six-year span that organization built a championship-caliber team, saw their window close, took one year to retool and already is close to that level again. Something the New York Giants have struggled to do since Coughlin, and really, Ernie Accorsi left.
The cupboard is pretty bare, with Saquon Barkley being the only sure building block they have. Evan Engram is talented but injury-prone, the defense is a dumpster fire, and the jury is very much out on Daniel Jones. The rest of the roster is made up of veterans who really don’t fit the team’s time table. The next GM will have work cut out for him.
The New York Giants have always leaned towards established NFL figures and/or consensus type picks for their leadership positions, when they went outside the organization. Clearly, the Gettleman approach did not work this time around. With the league changing so dramatically a youthful, new approach might be the way to go with their next regime change. If not another wasted decade looms for Big Blue.
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