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Giants coaching search: New England special teams coach Joe Judge a candidate

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List of candidates continues to grow

NFL: JAN 28 Super Bowl Opening Night - Patriots
Joe Judge
Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The New York Giants promised an “extensive” search for a head coach to replace the fired Pat Shurmur. So far, the names connected to the position have been interesting — from Super Bowl winning coach Mike McCarthy to under the radar defensive coordinator Don Martindale of the Baltimore Ravens.

Well, now you can add another under-the-radar name to the Giants’ list as Adam Schefter is reporting that the Giants have requested permission to speak with New England Patriots special teams coordinator Joe Judge.

Judge, 37, has been with the Patriots since 2012. He became special teams coordinator in 2015, and this season added coaching wide receivers to his special teams duties.

Prior to working for Bill Belichick, Judge worked as a special teams assistant for Nick Saban at Alabama from 2009-2011.

The Giants’ interview would be his first for an NFL head-coaching position.

Bernd Buchmasser of SB Nation’s Pats Pulpit had this to say about Judge:

“The Patriots certainly think highly of Judge, and added the wide receiver position to his duties this offseason to his role as special teams coach – one he originally took over in 2015, his fourth year with the organization after coming over from Alabama. While not exactly the biggest name on the coaching market, expect Judge to be a popular coach in the upcoming years even if the Giants do not end up hiring him. The situation reminds me a bit of Brian Flores: the now-Dolphins coach took an interview with the Cardinals while still a position coach. One year later, he joined Miami. Expect Judge’s rise to be similar, especially if he does not end up succeeding Josh McDaniels as the Patriots’ offensive coordinator in the near future. Just that last sentence alone should tell you how Bill Belichick feels about the 37-year-old.”

Baltimore Ravens head coach John Harbaugh ascended from the ranks of being a special teams coach, so there is precedent. Flores’ success and the Belichick-Saban connections are also attractive.

Want a glimpse of his style? Here is something Judge told Patriots.com earlier this year:

“To me, coaching has always been teaching. I worked for a guy a while back who told me that teaching is just to inspire learning. To me, learning different methods of teaching is the biggest thing,” Judge said. “There is no one way to teach. Everybody learns differently, and you have to really learn who the class is, who the students are, so you can reach everybody. You can’t teach to the highest in the classroom, and if you only teach to the lowest in the classroom, you’re going to miss others. You have to find ways to teach to the entire spectrum at the same time through different methods and keep everybody engaged.”

The list

Matt Rhule, Baylor head coach — Reportedly turned down a chance to interview with the Cleveland Browns.
Mike McCarthy, ex-Green Bay Packers coach [Interview scheduled Friday, per ESPN]
Don Martindale, Baltimore Ravens defensive coordinator
Eric Bieniemy, Kansas City Chiefs offensive coordinator [Interview scheduled Thursday]
Kris Richard, Dallas Cowboys defensive passing game coordinator [Interview scheduled Thursday]
Josh McDaniels, New England Patriots offensive coordinator
Joe Judge, New England Patriots special teams coordinator