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Valentine's View: Five takeaways from Reese, Coughlin Combine remarks

Some thoughts on the remarks by Jerry Reese and Tom Coughlin during the 2014 NFL Combine.

Chris Snee
Chris Snee
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

We have heard from both New York Giants' head coach Tom Coughlin and general manager Jerry Reese during the 2014 NFL Combine. Here are a few takeaways from their remarks.

Let's start with this. I can't, and won't try, to be as funny as 'Shofner85' in his comments about what Reese said Saturday. If you missed them, here is a much-deserved shout out:

Reading JR's comments between the lines ...

1. On new OC: "It was time to make a change …" – Killdrive got fired.
2. On 7-9 season: "I think we can turn it around. Obviously there’s going to be some significant changes on our roster." – We’d better … this year it was Killdrive, next year it will be me.
3. On the Draft: "We’re going to draft the best players available." – at our biggest positions of need.
4. On Snee: "Is he going to be healthy, that’s the number one thing. He’s got a big contract, that’s an issue as well. All that will get hashed out when we figure out if he’s going to be healthy enough. He definitely wants to play. He’s had significant injuries and he’s not a baby at this point in his career, so that always factors in." – his exit interview is already scheduled … there will be cake at his retirement party.
5. On Wilson: "If David Wilson was 33 it would be pretty tough for him to come back from his injury. He’s 23, I think." – kid better stop fumbling … oh, the neck’s fine.
6. On Free Agency: "If there’s some guys you like and you have the money, go get ’em. But if you can hold your water I think there will probably be some guys available in that second and third wave." – I’ve already had 3 Big Gulps this morning … and I haven’t been to the Little Boys Room once.

Now, on to my thoughts about the remarks of the team's two primary decision-makers.

There could be a fight brewing over Chris Snee

This one actually should have been easy to see coming. Following a pair of hip surgeries, Snee apparently wants to try to continue his playing career. On Friday, Coughlin said Snee is "progresing well" and "building himself back up," seeming to sound very much like the father-in-law to Snee that he is. Reese sounded more like a GM ready to move on from Snee when he said "He's had significant injuries and he's not a baby at this point in his career."

If Snee gets to try to come back with the Giants, that has to be seen as a win for Coughlin. If Snee retires or plays elsewhere I would see that as a win for Reese. My thought? You can't choose your family, but you can -- sometimes -- choose whether or not to be around them. This is one of those times. If Snee wants to play the best thing for the Giants would be for Coughlin to write him a nice letter of recommendation and help him get a job -- somewhere else.

Free agency stuff

Say goodbye, and good riddance if you are so inclined, to Hakeem Nicks. Start hoping Damontre Moore is ready to be a full-time player because Justin Tuck is probably also gone. My read on Reese's remarks about Tuck is that he won't get into a bidding war for him, so he only returns if he finds a limited market and comes back to New York at the Giants' price. From all indications, there is going to be a market for Tuck.

Kevin Gilbride did everyone a favor

Did Gilbride retire completely of his own volition? Was he 'encouraged' to do so to prevent the Giants from having to fire him? We may never know for certain. It is pretty obvious from co-owner John Mara's prior comments and Reese's statement that "It was time to make a change," that Gilbride was not going to be the Giants' offensive coordinator in 2014.

The Giants still believe in their philosophy

They haven't made the playoffs in two years, but that doesn't mean the Giants' hierarchy believes their over-arching philosophy is off-base. Even with a new offensive coordinator Coughlin sounded very much on Friday like a head coach who still expected to be running a team that had a balanced offense featuring vertical passing. Reese, for his part, did not sound like a GM ready to re-invent the wheel in terms of the way he has always approached free agency and the draft.

Watch out for a WR early in the draft

Coughlin talked about the vertical element of the passing game still being there. Reese and Coughlin basically admitted Nicks is gone. Reese took a thinly-veiled shot at third-year man Rueben Randle, saying "We expect him to make a significant jump. We expect him to grow and be a more mature player." Translation: Randle needs to grow up and take his job more seriously. I would also take that to mean that if a wide receiver the Giants believe can be a No. 1 i sitting there at 12 the Giants might be hard-pressed to pass him up. Current indications are that a plethora of starting-caliber offensive linemen could still be available in the second round.