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Back home, Thomas McGaughey looks forward to improving Giants’ special teams

McGaughey coached special teams for New York from 2007-10

NFL: New York Giants at Denver Broncos Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

New York Giants Special Teams Coordinator Thomas McGaughey spoke with the media on Wednesday afternoon. McGaughey comes to the Giants this season from the Carolina Panthers, where he also served as the special teams coordinator. Back from 2007-10, he served as the assistant special teams coordinator, a return he spoke about on Wednesday.

“It’s great,” McGaughey said. “It’s like coming back home. I mean, it really is. When you walk in this building, you spent so many hours in this building and being in this indoor facility now and seeing the banners and being able to see the view of the city from the practice field, there are very few places on this earth like the New York Giants and it’s really good to be back.”

Back on March 26, the Giants signed former Miami Dolphins safety Michael Thomas to a two-year deal, who figures to help New York’s special team coverage next season. This move is one that excited McGaughey.

“Absolutely, McGaughey said. “Mike is the ultimate competitor, he does an outstanding job in the coverage game, he’s a smart player. I’m kind of biased towards Mike, he’s a Houston guy and a good friend of mine. David Suggs was his high school coach who gave me my first job, so there’s some background there. But Mike is a high impact player and we look forward to him making big plays.”

Thomas wasn’t the only player that the Giants have signed who has a great reputation on special teams. New York has made it a priority this offseason to sign players that can help in that aspect of the game, a change in philosophy that McGaughey is a huge fan of.

“You always want to be the best,” McGaughey said. “And I think that when you look at building a roster from the top down, the bottom up, yeah you’ve got to have those pieces and I think those pieces are extremely important for us to move forward as a unit and as a team to get back to where we want to be.”

One of the most questionable players on the Giants roster moving forward is kicker Aldrick Rosas. Last season, in his first year with the team, Rosas made 18-of-25 field goals and 18-of-20 extra points. McGaughey chalked the inconsistency up to a young kicker trying to adjust.

“I see a kid that was a rookie last year and like most rookies in this league, they’re inconsistent,” McGaughey said. “It’s rare where you see a rookie that just comes in and just rips it up just walking through the door. He’s young and like Dave Gettleman always says, we’re not going to give up on talent. He’s a talented guy and there’s some things that he can do that a lot of people can’t do and I think there’s some talent there and we’re going to work with that talent.”

Despite the belief in Rosas’ ability to turn it around next season, McGaughey is ready for an open competition at both placekicker and punter this offseason.

“No, we have some guys in the building that are already on the roster,” McGaughey said. “Obviously we’re going to create some competition there, add a piece or two. We’ll see what happens.”