State of the Giants, Part One: Coughlin and Reese
John Fennelly , Lead Writer
People have been asking for my opinion on the Giants’ season an I have been hedging, waiting for the emotions to subside so I can be as objective and fair. Well. here is Part One. Some of you will like it. Some of you won’t. The truth hurts sometimes. Sorry.
Let’s start with the head coach and the GM….
Head coach Tom Coughlin – He has more energy and drive than 95% of the coaches and players in this league. Age is not an issue for Tom, and I don’t think it ever will be. He is an excellent teacher, motivator and strategist.
He’s not the problem, but he’s not contributing as much as he should to the solution, either. That has to change. The conservative approach pays off sometimes. Other times, it does not. When to pull the lever is always tricky, but no one ever said being an NFL head coach was bowl of cherries.
His loyalty clouds his judgement sometimes and he is hesitant to trust rookies and young players, almost to the point where it hurts the team. He has gone from a coach that was too strict and hard to play for to one that some players may not take seriously any longer. IMO he stays, but he’s got to be more flexible and timely when it comes changing things up.
GM Jerry Reese – One of the game’s best. Reese does have some flaws, however. He’s been drafting too many “tweeners” and projects and not enough NFL-ready players. Many of his high draft picks do not contribute right away. Some have never contributed. A couple of years of doing that and your roster is full holes, which it is now. He’s reached on a few picks and gotten unlucky on some others. Now and again, he strikes gold.
None of his first rounders (JPP, Nicks, Wilson, Prince, Ross, Phillips) have gone bust. Some of them have been oft-injured, but none have busted. His second round record is above .500. Steve Smith, Terrell Thomas, Will Beatty and Linval Joseph have all been productive. Rueben Randle is on his way. Clint Sintim’s career never got started. Marvin Austin could be headed out the door, too.
It’s the third and fourth round where he’s slipped a bit: Jerrel Jernigan, James Brewer, Jayron Hosley, Travis Beckum, Chad Jones, Ramses Barden, Phillip Dillard, Bryan Kehl. Adrien Robinson looks to have been a reach right now.To be fair, Mario Manningham was a 3 and Zak DeOssie a 4, which were two solid picks. Andre Brown was also a 4, but the team cut him a few times before he finally stuck.
There’s one thing Reese does better than most and that is hit paydirt with free agents (Antrel Rolle, Martellus Bennett, Stevie Brown, Sean Locklear, Steve Weatherford, Kevin Boothe, Domenik Hixon) and UDFAs such as Victor Cruz, Jake Ballard, Mark Herzlich, Henry Hynoski, Spencer Paysinger and Will Hill.
Tomorrow: the Coordinators