Good morning, New York Giants fans! Here are some Giants-related headlines to start your Tuesday. The search for a Big Blue offensive coordinator continues.
Colts to hire Chargers WR coach Nick Sirianni as OC - NFL.com
NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported, according to a source involved, that the Colts are hiring Chargers wide receiver coach Nick Siraianni as their offensive coordinator.
One year ago, the Giants staged their version of a Valentine’s Day massacre, cutting popular receiver Victor Cruz and starting running back Rashad Jennings. The moves saved $10 million in salary-cap space for a team coming off a season that produced a record of 11-5 record and the first playoff appearance in five years.
A year later, the Giants have already undergone tremendous upheaval, as for the first time in 39 years they will enter a season with a new head coach and new general manager. Reshaping the roster is the next order of business. Figure it will be a widespread, invasive slashing commensurate with a team that went 3-13 and is now operating under the scrutiny of Dave Gettleman at general manager and Pat Shurmur as head coach — veteran NFL leaders desirous of building the team the way they see fit.
With just under $22 million in salary-cap money, for now, to work with, Gettleman is inheriting a healthier financial situation with the Giants than he did five years ago with the Panthers. The four highest-paid players on the roster — Eli Manning, Jason Pierre-Paul, Olivier Vernon and Janoris Jenkins — account for an unwieldy 43 percent of the total salary-cap allotment. All four of those players are coming off sluggish or subpar seasons. Based on their contracts, though, it is highly unlikely any of the four get cut.
This week’s “Cover 3” question: Do the Giants need to improve more on offense or defense to get back on track in 2018?
Can I choose both? The Giants were ranked 21st in the league offensively in terms of yards gained (314 per game), but they were next to last in points per game (15.4). Defensively, the Giants gave up more yards (373 per game) than any other team in the league but one. They also allowed 24.2 points per game, fifth-most in the league. Both sides of the ball need to make significant improvement if the Giants want to be better in 2018. If only one side gets better, it isn’t going to matter.
But just for fun, I’ll go with the offense. The defense will likely have much of the same personnel that put together a strong 2016 season, a fair expectation if the players on that side of the ball stay healthy. The offense, on the other hand, has struggled for two years. The issues were exacerbated in 2017 with the injuries to Odell Beckham Jr. and the other wide receivers, but the core of the problem was no different. The Giants were unable to run the ball consistently, or protect the quarterback well enough to make big plays down the field. Until there is improvement in those areas, the offense will continue to struggle and so will the team. Fix those things, and success will follow.