Monday morning was an eventful one in the New York Football Giants front office. No, they were not looking into making reservations for upcoming trips in the playoffs, quite the contrary. Co-owners John Mara and Steve Tisch instead fired beleaguered head coach, Ben McAdoo, and lame duck General Manager, Jerry Reese, as well.
Photo: Giants Wire
How could things have gone SO wrong for Big Blue and these two gentlemen in particular? One season removed from an 11-5 season in which they closed with a 9-2 stretch, the Giants went to Green Bay to play the Packers in a wildcard game. After dominating the first half defensively and leading 6-0, they allowed two touchdowns (one of them a Hail Mary on the half’s last play) in the final 2:20 and got torched 24-7 in the second half. So, while it seems their wheels came off on the frozen tundra of Lambeau Field, Big Blue’s engine completely fell out during this season’s 0-5 start.
The Giants haven’t fired a head coach in-season since 1976 when they sacked Bill Arnsparger, who was 7-28, Mara and Tisch felt they had no choice but to make the move Monday. And while Mara said in his subsequent press conference that McAdoo’s handling of Eli Manning’s benching had nothing to do with the firing, that is nonsense!
Photo: NY Daily News
Giants fans have been incensed since the deed was done, and those who actually planned to show up on Sunday were going to be heard. There was even talk that some of Eli’s former teammates would don #10 Manning jerseys to show support. That I assure you is not good for John’s business. So, in order to stop the public relations bleeding, he threw McAdoo and Reese overboard. Sure 2-10 is really bad, but so is Mara’s beloved Giants brand at the moment.
So what now? First and foremost, meet the new boss, same as the old boss! Yes, Eli Manning will be back under center this Sunday against the Cowboys. This will be his first consecutive start – 😉.
But how about next year? Who will be the next general manager, charged with picking up Reese’s pieces while adding winning talent to a team that is hardly bereft of it? Some names have already been bandied about, but I have no clear-cut choice in this regard. As for head coach, however, there is a gentleman I wanted the Giants to hire back when McAdoo was the selection, and that is Stanford head coach David Shaw.
If you take a quick look at his Wikipedia page, you’ll find out that the 45-year-old Shaw has called Palo Alto, California his home for many years now. He got his start at Stanford as a wide receiver where he played for coaches Dennis Green and Bill Walsh. In 2007 he was named offensive coordinator under head coach Jim Harbaugh, and since 2011, he has been the head coach of the Cardinal.
Photo: The New York Times
If you take a deeper dive into his resume, though, you’ll find that he was assistant coach in the NFL from 1997 through 2005 (Eagles, Raiders, and Ravens). Shaw’s Stanford teams have been very successful. He boasts a 73-20 overall record, 49-14 in Pac 12 competition. The Cardinal have finished in first place in five of his seven years at the helm, and have won four of the six bowl games they’ve played in. Clearly qualified for the position, Shaw would also bring a great perspective to the table, one that no other candidate for the gig could possibly have. You see, he has had to game-plan against two of the perceived to be top players “on the board” in the upcoming NFL draft, USC quarterback Sam Darnold, and UCLA signal caller Josh Rosen. Shaw has seen Rosen up close and personal three times and Darnold twice. Really folks, who does not think that the Giants will be drafting a quarterback in April?
Already names like Bill Cowher, Josh McDaniel, and Nick Saban are being mentioned as options, but for my money, Shaw is the guy. Will he want to leave the Pacific Northwest for New York/New Jersey? Only time will tell. If he is ultimately Mara and Tisch’s guy, then they $hould make it worth hi$ while.
And that is My 2 Sense for this week.
Feature Photo: Twitter