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10 thoughts about Joe Judge’s New York Giants’ coaching staff

What should we make of this group?

Cleveland Browns v Cincinnati Bengals
Freddie Kitchens
Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Now that we know the 20 men who will make up Joe Judge’s coaching staff for the New York Giants, here are some initial thoughts on the group.

  • This is no patchwork quilt of coaches. Each of these hires appears to have been well-thought out and well-researched. “Guys who I have not worked with directly, I’ve competed against, I’ve known for some time. I’ve more than done my research on everybody on this staff, including the guys I’ve worked with. No stone has been unturned,” Judge said. Good.
  • Co-owner John Mara and GM Dave Gettleman were hopeful that Judge would hire at least one assistant with NFL head-coaching experience. He hired two, along with two others (Bret Bielema and Derek Dooley) who have extensive head-coaching experience at the college level. Judge said he “didn’t set out to hire anyone with former head coaching experience.” I’m glad, though, that he did.
  • If he was willing to be a position coach, it seems a pretty safe bet that Judge was always going to find a way to have ex-Cleveland Browns coach Freddie Kitchens on staff. Judge pointed out that he has worked with, played for and coached against Kitchens. “I think any position on offense is good for Freddie,” Judge said. “He’s got a lot of experience at different positions. He’s been head coach, he’s been a coordinator, he’s been a position coach. He sees it through a lot of different perspectives,” Judge said. “What I love about Freddie is he brings an element of toughness and discipline to his room. He brings outside the box thinking a lot of times to how he approaches the game from a game plan perspective.”
  • The hiring of Dooley as “senior offensive assistant” is interesting. Dooley might not have been a great collegiate head coach and his work as a position coach in Dallas was panned by some. What hasn’t been panned, though, is Dooley’s creativity as an offensive play designer. If he can be a sounding board for offensive coordinator Jason Garrett and add some creative touches to the playbook he will be an asset.
  • Part of Judge’s reasoning for naming Marc Colombo offensive line coach was that “Continuity is very important, especially between the offensive coordinator and the offensive line coach, that they can be on the same page starting out.” Love that. The offensive line coach has to be able to teach what the coordinator wants, and we already know Colombo can do that.
  • I’m really curious about 67-year-old running backs coach Burton Burns. He has never coached in the NFL, and stepped away from the Alabama sideline and into an administrative role after the 2017 season.
  • When Judge was talking about retaining wide receivers coach Tyke Tolbert from Pat Shurmur’s staff he talked about going to the tape and watching the players from Tolbert’s position group. Love that attention to detail. Maybe it’s standard operating procedure, but I don’t remember Tom Coughlin, Ben McAdoo or Shurmur ever talking about having done that when hiring assistants.
  • I’m really looking forward to watching defensive line coach Sean Spencer, known at Penn State as “Coach Chaos,” in action during practices.
  • If quarterbacks coach Jerry Schuplinski is anywhere near as good as Judge, who calls him an “incredible teacher,” says he is then Daniel Jones is in good hands.
  • The Garrett connection is strong. Colombo, Dooley, defensive backs coach Jerome Henderson and offensive assistant Stephen Brown all worked under Garrett with the Dallas Cowboys.