It’s safe to say that the 2022 offseason is the most consequential one in recent memory for the New York Giants.
Any year in which a team feels compelled to fire their head coach or general manager is going to be a consequential. The Giants will find themselves with a new general manager as well as head coach.
The Giants have already found their new GM in Joe Schoen, and they hope to have their next head coach before long.
Schoen had his introductory press conference on Wednesday, and both he and co-owner John Mara touched upon the ongoing head coaching search.
Mara had previously stated that the new GM would be taking the lead in the search for a new head coach. Fans have noted that while Schoen has been conducting interviews since being hired, John Mara, Steve Tisch, and Chris Mara have all been present and played roles in the interviews.
“It’s a collaboration,” (John) Mara said. “He’s not going to hire anybody that we don’t want and we’re certainly not going to hire anybody that he doesn’t want. But ownership always has final approval over any decision like that. That’s just not going to change.”
“Our system has always been the same,” Mara added. “We rely on the general manager. We rely on his advice. But at the end of the day, ownership has to approve it.”
One of the interesting facets of the Giants’ head coaching search is that they only have one candidate with an offensive background. Buffalo Bills offensive coordinator Brian Daboll is the only candidate to come from the offensive side of the ball.
But beyond that curiosity, the Giants have brought in candidates with a varied set of skills and backgrounds. Brian Flores, Dan Quinn, and Leslie Frazier all have backgrounds as head coaches while Daboll, Patrick Graham, and Lou Anarumo have “just” been successful coordinators. Each has coached different areas of teams as position coaches, ranging from tight ends to linebackers, to defensive backs.
“All of our candidates bring different skill sets to the table,” Schoen said. “I’m not concerned if they’ve been a head coach before or if they haven’t. I’m concerned with getting the best head coach for the New York Giants.”
As the man taking point in the search, Schoen was asked what would make a candidate the “best.”
“First off, leadership,” Schoen replied. “You have to be able to lead the team and you have to be able to put together a good staff.”
Schoen added that assembling a staff that know how to coach in the NFL is an imperative.
One of the criticism of Joe Judge’s staff was that many of his assistants were pulled from the college ranks. That proved to be a problem as, to paraphrase Carl Banks, they didn’t have experience knowing what NFL coaches would throw at what schemes.
The next factor would be that the coach (and coaching staff) was aligned with the front office’s vision for the team.
“It’s going to be imperative that it’s somebody who’s in lockstep with me that I can work with and have constant communication,” Schoen said, “and we’re going to be aligned in our vision as we build the football team.”
Part of that vision is building the team the “Right” way, and amassing talent through the NFL draft. Schoen also mentioned the need to make some hard decisions and shed salary over the coming off-season. Between that need and the desire to build through the draft, the Giants will likely have a young team in 2022 and beyond. That means needing a coach willing to rely on young players and get the most out of them.
“I think you’ve gotta be able to develop players,” Schoen said. “We have 11 draft picks (actually only 9). That’s going to be important. Some of those young players may have to be major contributors for us in 2022. So, the willingness to play young players.”
The second-biggest question from fans after “who” has been “when.” Fans are, understandably, anxious to see the team begin to make its turnaround and excited to see who will be leading the charge. The Giants’ owner isn’t putting a specific deadline on the search, and is more concerned with making the best hire possible.
“I want to make sure that we get it right as opposed to giving a specific timetable.”
We want you to get it right too, John.