It’s the nature of New York sports that when things go badly, they tend to spiral out of control. The New York Giants have, to say the least, been going badly for the New York Giants as they fall to an utterly putrid 4-12 following their debacle against the Chicago Bears.
That said, it would be unfair to say that things are getting ugly — they’ve been ugly.
But now things are starting to go from bad to worse as the Giants just seem to get worse by the week. The sharks have been circling as fans have been ripping their team for weeks and beat writers have been asking tough (and not so tough) questions.
But now the Giants are facing criticism once thought unthinkable as former players are beginning to tear into the Dave Gettleman.
Former Giants’ tight end Scott Simonson had some strong words for the Giants’ GM:
Dave Gettleman is an atrocious GM and not a good person IMO. The fact he’s had this much time to not be good at his job, while deciding others’ fates, and indebting one of the most historically respected franchises is embarrassing, and also a strong example of karma existing— Scott Simonson (@scottysimes83) January 2, 2022
To be fair, Simonson has no delusions about the role he played on the Giants, but he had good reason for not holding back.
Also, to be clear I don’t think this was intentional, I was a career backup player on minimum salary. I wasn’t an important piece of the machine so when I got damaged I was simply removed and replaced. But I’m NOT saying it was on purpose, it’s just how the nfl works sometimes. https://t.co/RyccVJSQgH— Scott Simonson (@scottysimes83) January 3, 2022
Former Giants’ fullback Shane Smith chimed in to support, and agree with, Simonson.
Let me clarify, not speaking poorly on DG as a person, I loved my time with NY. But there’s obviously something wrong if they’ve had multiple coaches and great players go there and no one can have success. https://t.co/DgWr35HFbP— Shane Smith (@ShaneSmith821) January 2, 2022
It would be one thing if disgruntled backups were expressing frustration with the performance of the team.
However, what Simonson (and by extension, Smith) are saying tracks with what several other players have said about how Gettleman dealt with them. Former Giant Jason Pierre-Paul has said that he was shocked with how Gettleman handled his trade to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.:
“I gave a hard eight years with the Giants, won a Super Bowl there, and the only thing I got was a phone call? I won’t say I was hurt, but it was shocking,” Pierre-Paul said. “I just got a phone call basically saying I was traded. That’s the way they went about it. Never heard from anyone else... But Eli called me as well.”
Likewise, fellow former Giant Landon Collins said that Gettleman never communicated him before making no effort to extend him.
“I never talked to Dave. Never talked to him. It sat with me bad. Just talk to somebody. Let us know something. If you’re going to trade me, trade me. If you’re going to let me go, let me go. Whatever. Don’t have a decision out of blue like that, for me to do this much for that organization—before he got there.
“If you can’t pay me, you can’t keep me, or I’m not what you’re looking for with your future, all right. Just let me know. It’s all good. I haven’t talked to this man not one time. The handling of it was horrible.”
In fact, Collins claimed that simply does not trust Dave Gettleman, saying:
“No dignity at all,” Collins told NJ Advance Media’s Darryl Slater of his experiences with Gettleman. “I didn’t know what was going on. He’s a liar. He lied to everybody. So that’s a man I do not trust. I would hope nobody else would, too.”
The track record of players who
Former Carolina Panthers great Jon Beason said after he was traded to the Giants by Gettleman in 2013 that he was faking a knee injury while recovering from microfracture surgery. Beason said, “For him not to know me and say, ‘Hey, listen, you’re faking this injury.’ Those are harsh words,” Beason said. “Verbatim. ‘C’mon, Jon. You know nothing’s wrong with your knee.’
“Obviously, I didn’t like that he was challenging my character, my integrity,” Beason said. “Especially since I love to play football.”
And of couse former Panthers’ running back DeAngelo Williams had the starkest warning for Giants’ fans. He called Gettleman a “snake” back in 2017, and warned he was the New York players’ “problem now”, saying,
“He’s your problem now. That’s exactly what I’d tell them. For the vet players that are there now, be very cautious. Once he gets his guys in there, then he develops that relationship with them, and not developing a relationship with the guys that are already there because he doesn’t know them.”
“When you’re down in that locker room you are family ... If I’m friends with you or I’m a family member of yours, when I call you into the office to release you, I handle it in a family member type way,” Williams said. “Like, ‘Hey, we really appreciate everything you’ve done for this organization, really loved everything you’re doing,’ it’s more like breaking up with your girlfriend, ‘it’s not you, it’s me.’ Whatever excuses you give.
When you come into an office somebody handling business, ‘Hey man, you’re gone.’ Like, wait, what? ... Nine years. I been here for nine years, I played through injuries ... I give everything you possibly can for an organization and the way they let you go is ‘Hey man, you’re out of here.’ They let Steve (Smith) go through a text message.”