The New York Giants have answered the question looming over their franchise since the before the end of the 2015 regular season. Ben McAdoo has succeeded Tom Coughlin as the Giants new head coach. But as so often happens in life, answering one question just spawns more.
What questions will McAdoo have to answer now that he's the man in charge?
1. How Will He Use His Personnel?
John Mara and Jerry Reese's post-season press conferences confirmed what we already knew. While the Giants have done a good job of finding talent at the top of the draft, they haven't gotten much from their middle and late round picks. Nobody out here has any clue how much of that is at the feet of the scouting department for picking the players, and how much rests at the feet of the coaching staff for developing the players selected.
But will McAdoo be able to work in concert with Jerry Reese?
They will need to be able to pick the right players for what McAdoo wants to accomplish, and then play them to their strengths, rather than not play them because of their weaknesses.
2. What Will He Do About The Assistants?
It has been reported that one reason why Tom Coughlin backed out of the Philadelphia Eagles' coaching search is because many of his trusted assistant coaches will be staying in New York. However, at least some of them are drawing interest elsewhere and there are also coaches who have drawn criticism for their units' performance.Will McAdoo make necessary moves to the coaching staff to replace losses and replace under-performing coaches?
And while the Giants have changed many facets of their strength and conditioning protocols over the last three years, they have also led the league in injuries each of those years. The situation is untenable, and McAdoo will have to find some way to get the injury situation under control.
3. How Will The Offense Run?
It was initially reported that former Miami Dolphins head coach and Green Bay Packers offensive coordinator would be brought on as McAdoo's offensive coordinator. Philbin still seems to have a role on McAdoo's staff, but it now appears that the offensive coordinator will be Mike Sullivan.
At first glance, it seems as though Philbin will have a similar role in New York as he had in Green Bay, as the offensive "Eyes In The Sky", and will be in communication with Mike Sullivan who will be calling the actual plays.
The other side of that question is about the offense itself. It has been suspected that despite McAdoo being the offensive coordinator, the offense the Giants ran in 2014 and 2015 was a (sometimes contentious) marriage between McAdoo' and Tom Coughlin's philosophies. How will the offense look now that the 38-year-old West Coast disciple is in charge?
4. Can They Fix The Defense?
The Giants are keeping Steve Spagnuolo in place, apparently giving him the opportunity to prove that he is the right man for the job. With a high draft pick and a lot of cap room, they have the resources to return the defense to the level at which they are expected to play. Will McAdoo give Spags free reign to rebuild his unit? Will he work with Spags to offer insight from an offensive perspective? How much of the Giants' resources will he use to fill the Giants' offensive holes?
5. Can He Run A Whole Team?
This is the biggie. Can McAdoo -- who only has two years' worth of experience as a coordinator -- run a whole team? He has been lauded as a hard-working, meticulous, and relationship-driven coach, all of which bode well. However, the fact remains that he is inexperienced. Will he be able to cope with vastly expanded responsibilities? Will he be able to deal with a full roster full of personalities, not to mention his stable of coaches? And almost uniquely "New York", will McAdoo be able to deal with the media? The New York fishbowl isn't given to honeymoon periods, and McAdoo having been in the organization for the last two years likely means that he won't get one.
Can McAdoo run a flagship team, and win quickly enough to keep the wolves from his door?