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Kevin Abrams won’t campaign in media for GM job

Interim GM holds impromptu press conference

Photo by Ed Valentine

New York Giants interim general manager Kevin Abrams did something on Thursday that would have been unheard of during Jerry Reese’s tenure as general manager. During the brief portion of practice open to media, Abrams gathered reporters for an impromptu press conference.

Abrams simply said “yes” when asked if he wanted the full-time GM job.

“I think everyone would want this job,” he added.

Abrams did say he has been told he will get an interview for the permanent job before the end of the season.

Abrams, 43, said he didn’t gather media to campaign for a job. When pressed for why he thought he was ready for the job after having been with the Giants since 1999 he stuck to that.

“It sounds a little bit like I’m going to be interviewing on the spot here,” he said. “I’d rather not do that just because of the appearance of a campaign and I want to play it straight.”

Abrams did, however argue that he is more than a “salary cap guy,” although that has been his primary responsibility during his time with the Giants.

“I don’t want to interview or campaign for a job today, here and now, but my role has been more than just doing the cap (salary cap) stuff. I wasn’t raised to be a cap guy. It was just the opportunity that was given to me and I was grateful of the opportunity and the Giants do a great job with everyone – not just me,” Abrams said. “But, we’re all encouraged to grow professionally and like everyone else, I was getting a lot of opportunities to do that and I try to take advantage of them whenever I could and a lot of that included being involved with our personnel departments.”

More takeaways

On how his role has changed ...

“Well, I don’t have Jerry (Reese) down the hallway to make all the final decisions right now and the job is to support the coach, support the staff, support the players. There’s not a lot you can do the last four weeks of the season. You do what you can, but it’s support. Support all day.”

On how the scouting department is functioning ...

“Nothing on our scouting side of things has changed. It’s business as usual. Marc (Ross) and his staff are preparing for the draft like they would normally. Our pro department is doing what they do – advance books, following the wire, finding opportunities for us to incrementally get better at the bottom of the roster and preparing for next offseason. So, nothing really changes.”

On what went wrong this season for the Giants ...

“I don’t know if I want to dissect the whole thing right now. There will be a time to do a full autopsy of 2017, but it’s been – like John (Mara) said – it’s a bit of a perfect storm. There’s nothing that we can use as excuses, but we’ve had some areas where we’ve underachieved. We’ve had some unfortunate instances. We’ve had some runs of injuries. We’ve had a lot of things and you guys were at all of our games. You’ve seen some of the things that have worked out for us and against us that, you know, sometimes you go .500 on the bounces that go your way and sometimes they don’t. I don’t know if we’ve fallen short of that this year, but it’s been a tough year for a lot of different reasons and there’s no one person, position group, individual that’s the cause of us being 2-11. We’re collectively 2-11. So, the short answer is we need to get better in a lot of areas.”

On getting playing time for rookie quarterback Davis Webb ...

“I think we’d like all of your young guys to get a chance down the stretch. Davis, in particular. Because of the position, it’s just hard to do. And I know you guys know this already, but you can only play one quarterback at a time. So, it’s not like trying to sprinkle in a defensive tackle or a linebacker into the mix and give him some reps. It’s a bit different, it has a bit more of an impact on everything else that you do. Spags and I talk about it all the time, John’s talked about it on plenty of occasions, and we know what we want to accomplish, it’s just not easy to do it necessarily. It’s an ongoing conversation and hopefully we get an opportunity to put him out there, but it’s got to be done the right way.”

Abrams admitted it would be easy to play Webb if the Giants started him, but “It’s making that decision that’s not as easy.” He added that decision will belong to interim coach Steve Spagnuolo.

On what his message is to the fan base right now ...

“Well, I think, first and foremost, Spags has a really hard job now and he’s doing it really well. His first 10 days on the job have been exceptional. His message to the team has been fantastic, the changes have been subtle, but they’ve had impact, and I think the players are buying in. I think we had a bit of a blip coming out of the bye, I think, where maybe it wasn’t our best efforts, but I think that otherwise, I know our record doesn’t show it, but our guys have played their tails off. Our preparation and efforts on Sunday, I think, have been great. I think they deserve more positive results than they’ve gotten, but two things I know Spags is doing a lot during the stretch, and there’s not a lot you can do, but he’s getting everything out of this team he can right now and I know the team has responded well, even before last week. But, especially now, they’re responding well.”