By Jeff Pilgrim @Jeff_NYG
The New York Giants welcomed their new head coach this week. Former Special Teams Coordinator for the Patriots, Joe Judge, is now the Head Coach for the New York Giants.
He said everything right in his press conference. He was poised, confident and very comfortable with the NY Media. Many people found his messaging to be similar to Tom Coughlin. Judge placed a heavy focus on discipline, fundamentals and an old school mentality. In case that rubs anyone the wrong way, let’s remember Tom Coughlin brought two super bowls back home to New York with the same mentality.
It’s been a crazy week for Giants fans. We thought Matt Rhule was going to be the guy, then we learned of his signing with Carolina without even interviewing with NY. The Giants fan base was in complete shock when an hour later, it was announced an unknown special teams coach has been named the new head coach.
After the press conference, I think the entire fan base took a collective deep breath. Joe Judge seems to have all the makings of a great head coach. He’s been mentored and groomed by two of the best coaches in football, Nick Saban (Alabama) and Bill Belichick (Patriots). Judge has been part of 5 championships between the two organizations. He has seen what a winning culture looks like first hand. Coming from McAdoo and Shurmur, you’ve got to feel better about Joe Judge.
Mara (owner) and Gettleman (General Manager) have a lot of work to do in order to get in the good graces of the Giants fan base. A lot of damage has been done over the last several years. Churning out head coaches every two years is the opposite of a stable, winning culture.
Every time GM Dave Gettleman opens his mouth, we cringe. He comes off as arrogant and condescending; and many people wanted him gone along with Pat Shurmur. That being said, I’m in complete agreement with what we said yesterday. The top 4 rushing teams in 2019 are in the playoffs, the top 4 passing teams are not. “In order to win you have to run the ball, stop the run and rush the passer”. What he preaches is true. We’re now entering the 3rd year under GM Dave Gettleman. It’s time to start seeing these things come to fruition. To be fair, he was dealt a terrible hand. This is the year to make the turn. He’s got cap space, draft capital and this roster has been mostly put together by him.
Many people are concerned that Gettleman will make all roster decisions alone. When being asked that question by Bob Papa, Gettleman had this to say: “Joe will be in the middle of every decision. Him and I will talk things through and we’ll operate that way. It’s a shared vision. At the end of the day, the product is his on the field and I’m going to support him in any way I can”.
As for John Mara, he had this to say: “We liked all the coaches we interviewed. We would have been pleased to have had any one of them as our head coach”. I’m not sure if this is was Giants fans wanted to hear. We want to hear that Joe Judge was the guy all along. The reality is that our division rivals were snatching the high-profile coaches and the Giants were left in the dust. Then the final big name (Matt Rhule) signed with the Panthers.
It felt like rock bottom, and that leads me to my point:
Give Judge a Chance
He’s got the resume that warrants a chance to coach in this league. He’s been a part of the best football programs in college and the NFL. He is mature and confident beyond his young age of 38. Saban and Belichick have raved about him. We may have just landed the next great head coach in this league. In a couple of short years, we could be a consistent playoff team with a winning culture and a young coach who always gets the most out of all his players.
Let’s let this play out with optimism. Perhaps this has all played out as the best-case scenario for the Giants. Better days are coming.
And that’s the point.