New York Giants' general manager Jerry Reese stepped to the podium Tuesday at Quest Diagnostics Training Center prepared to be peppered with questions about why the team he built, expected to be a contender, started the season 0-6. He tried to cut them off with simple declarative statement: "Everybody’s got a lot of opinions about what went wrong . As far as I’m concerned everybody’s right, because when you’re 0-6 anything you say went wrong you’re probably right about."
Reese, however, didn't get off the hook without having to answer plenty of questions from reporters who have sought comment from him throughout much of what has been a disappointing season.
The GM is obviously not tone-deaf to the criticism he has received from the media and the fan base throughout the first half of the season.
"There's a lot of people who know how to do my job, it seems," Reese said. "Everybody can do their job better. I can do my job better. The coaches can do their job better. The players can do their job better."
Reese can be questioned, rightly or wrongly, for a number of personnel decisions heading into to the season. Asked specifically about linebacker, the GM issued a blanket statement pretty much covering the entirety of how the team was put together.
[Related: What Reese was SUPPOSED to say]
"You can say you miscalculated at quarterback, you can say you miscalculated at receiver, you can say that any time when you're 0-6," Reese said. "Sometimes you make some decisions that work out, sometimes you make some decisions that don't work out. That's just part of the business."
Reese did address the trade rumors surrounding wide receiver Hakeem Nicks.
"We always keep all of our options open. ... You never say never until 4 o'clock. We'll see what happen," he said.
Asked about the apparent lack of success from some of the Giants' recent draft classes, Reese gave a fairly candid answer.
"You start out 0-6 your personnel's not very good, you haven't made a lot of good decisions. If you win you're pretty smart, you've made a lot of good decisions We own all that. We try to develop players," Reese said.
"We always will believe in the draft. Sometimes you hit with players in the draft, sometimes you miss. Nobody's batting 1.000 in that, including me."
Reese was asked about some of the choices he made in free agency, and admitted that deciding whether to hold on to veteran players or let them go can be a difficult choice.
"Sometimes you guess right, sometimes you guess wrong on some personnel issues," Reese said. "It's just the way it is."
Reese does not believe the Giants need 'major rebuilding.
"It's always rebuilding," Reese said. "Even when you win Super Bowls, your roster changes every year."
The general manager expressed support for Giants' coach Tom Coughlin.
"He didn't forget how to coach," Reese said. "He's still an outstanding football coach."
Reese credited Coughlin for keeping the locker room united despite the awful start.
"He's done a really nice job," Reese said. "Our players have continued to play hard, continued to battle.
"This is not Tom's first rodeo. He's been around for a while. For him to keep this team together I think that shows how much respect the players have for him and what he does for this organization."