The New York Giants have had a rollercoaster offseason thus far. Here is a look at the big moves the Giants have made such as coaching changes, free agency signings and recent draft picks.
The Giants cleaned house on their coaching staff, firing head coach Pat Shurmur, offensive coordinator Mike Shula and defensive coordinator James Bettcher. This was obviously the right move letting Pat Shurmur go as the Giants went 9-23 under his leadership. The Giants seemed all set on who they were going to replace Shurmur with as the head man, as Matt Rhule reportedly listed the Giants as his dream position. But things didn’t go exactly as planned as he spurned the Giants and accepted the head coaching position with the Carolina Panthers.
With the Giants seemingly in headlights, they made a shocking move and decided to hire former New England Patriots special teams coach Joe Judge. Judge has never been a head coach, or an offensive/defensive coordinator, but has won three NFL Championships with the Patriots and two BCS National Championships with the University of Alabama when he was a special teams assistant back in 2009.
Judge and his coaching ability are unknown, but he stems off of Bill Belichick and Nick Saban’s coaching tree. The Giants also hired former head coach of the Dallas Cowboys Jason Garrett to be their offensive coordinator. Garrett had his ups and downs as the head coach in Dallas, but is known to have a good offensive mind, coaching the likes of Tony Romo and Dak Prescott. Garrett is expected to help young quarterback Daniel Jones take the next leap in his abilities in year two.
The Giants were able to have a really good draft and sign quality free agents. They got exactly what they needed, first taking tackle Andrew Thomas with the no. 4 overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft. With a dire need to fix their front line with the lackluster play of Nate Solder, and needing to protect their superstar running back Saquon Barkley and Daniel Jones, it was a no-brainer to choose a tackle. Thomas is capable of playing on both ends of the line, so it seems they will leave it up to the new offensive line coach Marc Colombo to figure that out. They also went with a slight surprise move with another tackle from the University of Connecticut with Matt Peart, who was a Senior Bowl attendee in his last season with UConn.
Although it is a bit surprising, the Giants could not go wrong with wanting to add a lot of depth to their offensive line with the way they played poorly this past season. Adding young talent at the offensive line can only help. But what many consider the major splash in the draft was getting Alabama safety Xavier McKinney who was a National Champion with the Crimson Tide in 2017. This adds more young talent to the Giants secondary and a partner for Jabrill Peppers to play alongside with.
Here is a look at some of the free agency moves the Giants made on the defensive end. The Giants urgently needed to add some depth and experience to their defense as they have one of the youngest (and worst) defenses in the league. They did just that by adding James Bradberry who was top cornerback for the Carolina Panthers a season ago. The Giants struggled all year long with defending the pass and did not have a clear cut number one cornerback with so much youth in their secondary. Bradberry brings this with experience and consistent solid play.
New York also added depth to their linebacker position signing both Blake Martinez and Kyler Fackrell who were previously on the Green Bay Packers. With veteran talent mixed with a lot of young players, it is up to new defensive coordinator Patrick Graham to get this unit working as a whole. The Giants were also able to add former Tennessee Titans running back Dion Lewis, to help ease the load off of Saquon Barkley. This heavy workload for Barkley the past couple of seasons was probably one of the reasons he got injured last season and missed a handful of games.
Moving on to their offense, the Giants have a sneaky deadly offense if everyone can stay healthy. The likes of Jones, Barkley, Sterling Shepard, Darius Slayton, Golden Tate and Evan Engram make this look like a dangerous group. This could be a top 10 offense in the league if everyone stays healthy and Jones and Slayton take another step in their development. With a lot of offseason changes and roster moves, the Giants are clearly looking to change things around this 2020-21 season.
The Giants made some headlines for all the wrong reasons during this offseason. Rookie cornerback DeAndre Baker had a warrant out for his arrest in May on suspicion of armed robbery and aggravated assault with a firearm. He later turned himself in a couple of days after. Baker’s lawyer has claimed his innocence. Kicker Aldrick Rosas was arrested with three misdemeanors for an alleged high-speed hit-and-run that led to his arrest in June.
Hoping For A Turnaround
Dave Gettlemen, the Giants general manager, has been in the hot seat since he got to New York in 2017. The owners John Mara and Steve Tisch want to see a quick turnaround, or Gettleman might see himself out of New York sooner than expected.
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