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Ben McAdoo the next Giants assistant to become a great head coach?

Giants didn't let this one get away.

Ben McAdoo
Ben McAdoo
Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

Vince Lombardi. Tom Landry. Bill Belichick. Sean Payton. All are Super Bowl-winning head coaches, two of them NFL legends, who were New York Giants assistants and went on to greatness elsewhere without ever coaching the Giants. Belichick will be a Hall of Famer. John Fox is another former Giant assistant who has had great success as a head coach, although he has yet to win a Super Bowl.

Giants' co-owner John Mara admitted on Friday that he was afraid that if the organization let him get away Ben McAdoo would become the next one.

"Yeah, because he obviously was our first choice, so yeah. If he had left and gone somewhere else we probably would have been very upset about that," Mara said. "Again the fact that he was a candidate for the Philadelphia job just accelerated the timing of the second interview. After the initial round of talking to six guys he was still my favorite at that point, and Jerry, so all the Philadelphia interview did was accelerate the timing of the second interview."

Mara and the Giants have always craved stability, and Mara admitted that McAdoo having been with the organization for two seasons already was part of the decision-making process.

"I think what really gave me the edge was the familiarity. I've been able to watch him for two years, I loved what he said, he had a really good grasp of what we had on our team, what we needed to improve on, and a great vision going forward," Mara said. "It's just something about having watching him on the field with the quarterbacks and with the offense. The first thing that came to mind two years ago was that this guy is a teacher and he's got an edge to him."

Mara admitted that the hiring of McAdoo by the Giants is similar to that of the hiring of Mike Tomlin by the Pittsburgh Steelers to replace Bill Cowher. When that took place, Tomlin was an unknown assistant with one season under his belt as a coordinator.

"Until a guy has done it you just never know but again we think he has what he takes," Mara said, "we'll find out. We won't know that until he starts coaching but, believe me, I thought about the Mike Tomlin scenario quite a bit. He came out of nowhere and now he's one of the best coaches out there. Let's face it more of them fail than not but I think this guy has everything that you need to be a successful head coach. Now we have to help him and get him better personnel."

Will McAdoo become a great coach? Will he turn into the next Ray Handley? No one knows. At least, though, the Giants know he won't be the next one to slip away from them without ever getting a chance to show what he could do.