Puzzling reports are coming out of the New York Giants this week.
Steve Serby of the New York Post reports that while General Manager Jerry Reese is safe regardless of whether or not the Giants make the playoffs, Head Coach Tom Coughlin is on the hot seat.
Logically speaking, if Coughlin is on the hot seat and Reese is safe regardless of a playoff appearance, then Coughlin’s job security depends greatly on whether or not he makes the playoffs.
But it shouldn’t matter if the Giants make the playoffs or not — it’s time for them to move on from Tom Coughlin.
Make no mistake. He’s been a good coach for them and was a good coach in Jacksonville before, but the results paint a very clear picture.
The most important measurement of a coach should be the team’s progress. Are they consistently getting better? Or, if they’re already at a high level, are they remaining consistent? If the answer to either of those is yes, then the coach should be kept.
If the answer is no, then the coach should be dismissed. The last several seasons show that the Giants are moving in the wrong direction.
From 2007-2011, the Giants won two Super Bowls. They made the playoffs three times and missed them once at 10-6. In that span, they never had a record worse than 8-8. They also scored 1,990 points in that window while allowing 1,819 and were only outscored in two individual seasons, one of those seasons ended in a Super Bowl victory. Their total regular season winning percentage in that span was 61.3.
From 2012-14, the Giants missed the playoffs each season. They steadily decreased, going 9-7 in 2012, 7-9 in 2013, and 6-10 in 2014. In that window, Big Blue was outscored 1,127-1,103, and only scoring more points than their opponents in one individual season (2012). Their total regular season winning percentage in that span was 45.8.
Thus far in 2015, the Giants are 5-6, although they have outscored the opposition 287-273. Their 2015 winning percentage this year is 45.5.
That’s going from one of the league’s finest franchises to an also-ran over the span of several seasons, and there have been plenty of games lost due to poor decision-making by Coughlin himself at the end of games.
It’s certainly possible that the Giants can win their division in 2015 and make the playoffs, but co-owner Steve Tisch summed that up in the most perfect way possible.
“We’re still in it, for sure, but that’s more of a statement of how unique the NFC East is,” he said, per Bart Hubbach of the New York Post
Based on what we’ve seen so far, the Giants could very easily win the NFC East with a 7-9 record.
If that happens, he’s safe? But if they go 6-10 and miss the playoffs or even 7-9 but miss, he’s gone?
That’s completely illogical.
The Giants have steadily regressed from the team that won two Super Bowls. Any positives to be gained this year only come from the fact that they play in a division that could easily be won with a losing record.
If this was one bad year after Coughlin’s brilliant 2007-2011 run, firing him wouldn’t make any sense. But this is now four down years in a row.
That’s a good enough sample size to say that once the 2015 season is over, the Giants and Tom Coughlin should end their partnership, even if it ends in the postseason.