Will Tom Coughlin resign or be removed as head coach of the New York Giants following Sunday's season finale against the Philadelphia Eagles? Truth is, nobody knows for sure. Maybe not even Coughlin or Giants co-owners John Mara and Steve Tisch.
Sure, everyone has an opinion. Everyone has the right to speculate. Some folks want you to believe they know more than they actually do know. Right now, though, the only certainty is that Coughlin will finish the 12th season of his tenure as Giants coach on Sunday.
Mike Garafolo of FOX Sports speculated on Friday that Coughlin would resign on Black Monday, the day after the season when many NFL coaches find out their services are no longer required. Two things that should be noted about this: First, Garafolo was giving an opinion, saying "I think he's ready to move away," rather than reporting a fact; Second, after the report came out he spent time backing away from it on Twitter.
Not quite how I phrased it. See the vid. https://t.co/98TbI3aQRC— Mike Garafolo (@MikeGarafolo) January 2, 2016
Former NFL general manager Charlie Casserly told the New York Post on Friday that "it's not obvious" that the Giants need to make a change:
"To me, they were playing their butts off up until last Sunday night,'' Casserly said, referring to the rout in Minnesota. "They certainly were listening to him up until last Sunday night, and I think he's doing the best he can with the talent."
That sounds darn close to a vote of confidence for Coughlin staying for a 13th season.
"From the outside, the players are playing hard, so if I'm looking at that and this guy's still got the energy, then you don't replace him,'' Casserly said. "You have to be inside the building to understand the dynamics.
"There are some places you can say, yeah, you need to change, it's obvious. It's not obvious with the Giants."
Hall of Fame NFL executive and current NFL analysts Bill Polian made the same case to keep Coughlin a few weeks ago.
There was a report earlier in the week that Mara and Tisch were split in their opinions on whether or not to keep Coughlin for a 13th season. Maybe that's true, maybe it isn't.
Maybe Coughlin doesn't even know if he wants to return. He certainly hedged on the question when asked on Thursday:
"Do I want to come back? I don't know if that's a great question right now. What I want to do is win a game on Sunday, that's the bottom line for this group right now," Coughlin said. "I always have the competitive spirit. Sometimes it takes me a day or two to figure it all out when it's over. Right now, let's stick with the game and let's go win a football game."
That's a far different response than Coughlin gave at the end of the 2014 season when he said "A 10-year extension? Yes. I would like to have that."
There is only one indisputable fact regarding the Giants right now. They have a football game to play on Sunday. What will happen after that? We will all just have to wait to find out.