OC Kevin Gilbride’s retirement has been officially announced by the Giants. He commented on his decision to leave the team in a release on the Giants’ website this afternoon:
“It’s hard to say, ‘It’s time. To finally do it, it’s a very unnatural feeling. I’ve been telling my wife (Debbie) for years I was going to do it. She moved back to Rhode Island (where she helps care for a granddaughter when the Gilbrides’ daughter is working), so I’ve been by myself in the hotel for three or four years. I knew this was it and I was going to do it. I finally pulled the trigger. But it’s difficult.
I’ve enjoyed every minute of coaching. Certainly the last 10 years with the Giants has been a special time, to be part of the bringing the Super Bowls to New York and New Jersey and the Giants organization. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the development of some of the young players that we brought along, certainly starting with Eli. But (also) Steve Smith and Victor Cruz; they hadn’t had a Pro Bowl receiver since 1968 and we brought two back to them. That’s been fun. And I thoroughly enjoyed being part of those exciting last-minute drives that we seem to excel at. That 2011 season, we had six or seven of them, including the Super Bowl.
It is difficult to walk away after a season like that, no question. You made the adjustments and you continue to modify and adapt and do the things you had to do to give your guys a chance. But all of the success we’ve had offensively through the last five or six years, we just weren’t able to get it done this year with all of the things that took place. But the thing we never did, we never used it as an excuse or explanation. We just continued to battle through and to win seven of our last 10 the way we did, I was very proud of our coaches and players.
What I’ll miss most of all are the relationships, certainly starting with Tom and all that he means to us, but also the other coaches and the players. When you’re with them in that environment, the crucible of competition, it’s hard not to forge some very, very strong bonds. It will be very difficult to say goodbye to those guys. I will miss them terribly. I’ll miss everybody in the organization.”