The New York Giants entered 2021 hoping their investments in general manage Dave Gettleman, head coach Joe Judge and quarterback Daniel Jones would finally be rewarded. As the NFL season draws to a close, all three men could be in danger of losing their jobs before next season.
New York parting ways with Gettleman is a foregone conclusion. Hired in 2018, repeated whiffs in free agency and the NFL Draft will result in him leaving the organization. While an official search isn’t underway, one internal candidate and several external options are already being considered.
But many around the NFL believed late in December that Judge and Jones would return for the 2022 season. It now appears that is no longer a safe assumption, per NFL insider Peter King.
Writing about the Giants’ situation for Sports Illustrated, King explained why he believes the Giants have to consider blowing it all up once again with changes at general manager, head coach and quarterback. At the end of it, the NFL insider suggested a complete overhaul is at least on the table.
I think I’m re-thinking my categorical statement that Joe Judge should be back coaching the Giants next year. Just thinking … The Giants lost a serviceable quarterback, Daniel Jones, to a neck injury, and the loss of a serviceable quarterback should not turn your team to dung. Yet the Giants have lost five straight and looked horrible doing it. I felt the Giants simply had to stop turning over the coach or GM or both every other year. But I saw something Sunday that really bothered me: the screwed-up kickoff return in Chicago. Giants returner Pharoh Cooper waved everyone away near his goal line, let the kickoff bounce, and it didn’t bounce into the end zone—it bounced sideways. Panic ensued and the Giants had to hustle to recover it. The play is made worse by the fact that Judge is a veteran special-teams coach. John Mara has to give serious consideration to blowing it all up again. I’m not saying he absolutely should. I’m saying I now think everything is on the table about the Giants future.NBC Sports’ Peter King on the New York Giants’ situation entering 2022.
The play King is referring to happened on a kickoff return before halftime. Return specialist Pharoh Cooper let the kick bounce, allowing the Bears’ special teamers to trap him inside the 10-yard line. Keep in mind, Judge served as the New England Patriots’ special teams coordinator (2015-’19) before New York stunned the NFL world by naming him its head coach.
Following a blowout loss to Chicago, Judge lost his composure during a post-game press conference. During a 10-minute rant, Judge suggested there are former players on new teams who told him they miss playing for him and the New York Giants, regretting taking more money to leave.
- New York Giants record (2017-2021): 22-56
ESPN’s Bill Barnwell essentially debunked that claim, showing that many of the Giants’ 2020 players who are no longer on the team are either no longer in the NFL or they are now playing for winning teams.
Much of the blame for all this will fall on team president John Mara, who made the decisions to hire Gettleman and Judge. Attempts to replicate the Giants’ archaic process and later to try and copy the Patriots’ model have backfired. The New York Giants likely need a complete organizational reset, but there will likely still be doubts with Mara making the decisions.