I gave you a lot of notes from the New York Giants' 'baggy day,' as they cleaned out their lockers, Monday afternoon. That still barely scratched the surface of the interviews and information that came out, so let's get to more of it.
Osi Umenyiora will have hip surgery after a season in which he recorded 11.5 sacks and caused an NFL record 10 fumbles. That is not unexpected, and per Ralph Vacchiano's report Osi should have no trouble being ready in time for next season.
Before Sunday's season finale I had written about how it seemed change was coming to the Giants. Some changes are definitely coming, but maybe not as much as I had anticipated. The Giants don't seem inclined to undertake any type of major overhaul.
"I think you just tweak. I don't think we're in a situation where you need to blow anything up," said owner John Mara. "Obviously there are improvements that need to be made. Somebody once said you are what your record says you are, and we're 10-6. We want to be better than that."
Giants fans remember Mara's tirade at the end of last season, when he said the 8-8 finish felt like 2-14. He feels much differently this time around.
"When I stood here a year ago, I was angry and extremely disappointed about the way we finished the season. I felt like we weren't competing. There is no worse feeling in sports than when you feel like your team is not competing. I can't say that's the case this year," Mara said. "I thought we competed really hard. Obviously, we're disappointed with the results but we won 10 games which is not an easy thing to do in the National Football League. Yeah, there is no comparison between this year and last year."
General manager Jerry Reese agreed with Mara when it comes to making changes
"There are going to be changes, for sure. I don't know that we have to do a lot of wholesale changes, but there definitely will be changes," Reese said. "There were some positive things that came out of the season for sure and there were some negative things as well.
"I'm really disappointed to be here talking to you guys about 10-6. I really felt like we had an opportunity to go further into the playoffs, get into the playoffs I should say, and really do some damage when we got there, but it didn't work out that way. I'm really disappointed, even more so than last year because we put ourselves in position and that's what our goal is every year, to put ourselves in a position and we put ourselves in position and we just did not finish the job and that's very disappointing."
Among those negative things, Reese actually pointed to the work by the Giants' secondary as a problem.
"We have to make more plays on the back end. We gave up too many explosive plays on the back end of the defense and we've got to get that corrected," Reese said. "I'm not sure what it is. We're trying to figure that out during the off season. I just know that there were some explosive plays that happened on the back end and we've got to prevent that. It's going to happen sometimes, there's always going to be explosive plays on the back end, but I think we gave up too many explosive plays. I'm not calling anybody out because we're all part of it - the defense in the front, the linebackers, everybody, the calls, whatever, but I just felt that that jumps out at me that there were too many explosive plays that we gave up."
I talked the other day in my last 'Kudos & Wet Willies' about some of the struggles Antrel Rolle had this season in being in the right position in coverage much of the season. Reese said that perhaps the Giants need to look at the way they used Rolle this season.
"What we asked him to do was a little bit different from what he did at Arizona," Reese said. "He played in coverage a lot, he was down in the box a lot, around the line of scrimmage a lot for us and he did good in that role for us. He was around, he was tough down in the box, he made a lot of plays for us down in the box, so he ended up making the Pro Bowl but I think that he’s not as happy as…I think he thinks he could have played better for us. I do think he can play better and he thinks he can play better."
Tom Coughlin said at this point he would take his coaching career "one year at a time," but that right now he would like to coach until he is "70 or 72." Oh, man. That gives us seven more years of debating annually whether he should be fired or not. By the way, Giants' ownership said Monday they have not ruled out extending Coughlin's contract beyond next season.
Brandon Jacobs left the locker room in a huff Monday, sounding very much like a player who does not expect to be back with the Giants next season.
"You’re all getting pictures of Brandon Jacobs leaving, wondering if he’ll ever return …," Jacobs said. " … That’ll be your caption tomorrow. #@&$ you all."