Giants

Football Giants New Coach Joe Judge Fills out His Coaching Staff

By Scott Mandel

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – Fifty years ago, when Joe Namath and the New York Jets won Super Bowl III, the championship coaching staff consisted of Weeb Ewbank, Walt Michaels, Clive Rush, and Buddy Ryan.

Four coaches. That was it.

Today, the league-worst New York Giants, under their fourth head coach in the past four years, Joe Judge, announced the composition of the team’s 2020 coaching staff. There will be a few more coaches on this staff than the Jets Super Bowl four.

How about 20 coaches on one team? That’s a ratio of about 2.5:1. two and a half players for every coach. That’s a better ratio than a Manhattan private school offers.

Judge’s 20-member staff is comprised of nine coaches who arrived from other NFL teams, including two who were head coaches last season; five who spent the 2019 season coaching collegiate football; and six who were with the Giants last year.

The first-year head coach revealed his three coordinators on January 17. On offense, it is Jason Garrett, 53, who is very familiar with the NFC East after coaching the Dallas Cowboys from 2010-19. The defensive coordinator is Patrick Graham, 41, who held the same position with the Miami Dolphins last season. Graham will also serve as assistant head coach. Thomas McGaughey, 46, returns for his third season as special teams coordinator. He was previously a coordinator for three other teams and was the Giants’ assistant special teams coach from 2007-10.

Freddie Kitchens, who was the head coach last season of the Cleveland Browns and Odell Beckham, Jr., was also brought in to coach the tight ends after just one year at the helm in Cleveland.

Kitchens, 45, spent the last two years in Cleveland, the first as running backs coach/associate head coach for the first eight games and offensive coordinator for the final eight before his season as head coach. He previously coached in Dallas (tight ends, 2006) and Arizona (tight ends, 2007-12; quarterbacks, 2013-16; and running backs in 2017).

“I think any position on offense is good for Freddie,” Judge said. “He’s got a lot of experience at different positions. He’s been head coach, he’s been a coordinator, he’s been a position coach. He sees it through a lot of different perspectives. What I love about Freddie is he brings an element of toughness and discipline to his room. He brings outside the box thinking a lot of times to how he approaches the game from a game plan perspective. I think he’ll be an asset to working with our offensive coaches and developing the game plan throughout the week. But ultimately, I’ve worked with Freddie, I’ve played for Freddie, and I’ve called against Freddie, and I understand what his players are about.” 

Marc Colombo, who played offensive line for the Dallas Cowboys, will be the offensive line coach under Garrett. whom he had worked with in Dallas since 2015.


Asked about the expertise Garrett and Kitchens bring as former NFL head coaches, Judge said, “Everybody brings a different type of experience to the job. I didn’t set out to hire anyone with former head coaching experience. That ended up being a plus of what different guys brought to their area.”


“The first thing I was prioritizing was good coaches who had a deep concern for the players that they were going to coach,” Judge said. “It has to start with the relationship from the coach to the player and understanding that we’re working together. Next thing I was prioritizing was good teachers. We had to find guys who can paint that mental picture for a player and find a way to tap into how they learn and get the most out of them. To me, it’s a big trust factor with the guys I have on the staff. I have a personal relationship with a lot of these guys, professional relationships with nearly all of them. Guys who I have not worked with directly, I’ve competed against, I’ve known for some time. I’ve more than done my research on everybody on this staff, including the guys I’ve worked with. No stone has been unturned. I’m very excited about the group we have in here. I know they’re going to bring a lot to this organization. I know they’re going to be a great asset to the players they’re going to coach.” 

Transcript of Eli Manning Post-Disaster Media Conference Call

By Scott Mandel

QB Eli Manning Conference Call — September 9, 2019 

Q: What did you think after watching the film? What were your takeaways and what was apparent coming out of the game?
A: I think it was kind of like we thought. We did a lot of good things, had some explosive plays, really good on first and second down, just not good enough on third down, and unfortunately a couple of them that we didn’t get were third and twos, and third and ones, and those types of plays. Then, some of the other ones, we got in too many third and elevens, and twelves, and thirteens, especially in the second half. I thought we moved the ball, probably the first six possessions that we had it, we moved it really well, and then after that kind of stalled out, got some penalties, and did not play as well after that.


Q: When you look at the two-minute drill at the end of the half, what went wrong there?
A: I thought we moved the ball well. They were trying to take away the sideline, so we got the ball over the middle some, but had a couple nice plays and got it near midfield with two timeouts left and 25 seconds. When we used our two timeouts, then you’ve got to be smart in that position. You’ve got to be careful. If you do throw it in bounds, do you have enough time to spike it and get up there and kick the field goal? So, we were kind of in that position where we maybe need six or seven more yards to get into field goal range, and just weren’t able to get something where we could get a completion and get out of bounds, and unfortunately had to try for the Hail Mary at the end.


Q: What did you think of the job done by the offensive line?
A: I think the offensive line did a great job. They did a great job in the run game and the pass game. They protected well all game against a good defensive line, a lot of movement, some blitzes, so I thought the offensive line did a great job. They gave me time to get through my progressions and gave us a chance to be successful.


Q: It sounds like Sterling Shepard is in the concussion protocol. For an offense that is already playing without Golden Tate, what would a potential loss of Sterling do?
A: Hopefully we get him back. If not, Russell Shepard is a guy that’s been in the offense and played well and done some good things for us. He’ll have to step in, and so hopefully we can get Sterling back for this week.


Q: What did you think about the Cowboys after playing them, were they as good as they looked against you guys?
A: It’s tough to measure after the first game, you have to always keep making improvements. Obviously, they played really well. Their offense seemed to be in rhythm, and I thought Dak played really well. They do good stuff defensively, I thought we moved the ball well, they had some good calls and played well in certain situations that kept us from scoring some points. I think they are obviously a good team and have played well the last couple of years and do some good things.


Q: How can you as an offensive guy help your young defense get better?
A: When you have some new guys and some young guys, you have to learn. You have to learn what teams are going to do, you have to come along and make plays. I don’t know exactly what happened, it’s not about the defense, it’s both sides doing their job. Sometimes you have those high scoring games, we have to do our part to match. We had the opportunities, that’s the unfortunate part. We went down and scored, had opportunities to score a few more times in the first half, two more times early in the second half where we needed those opportunities to get points and get scores to keep it a close game. Unfortunately, the first two drives of the second half, we had two good drives, but only ended up with three points and they ended up with 14 points and stretched the lead. When it’s those games and you are down a little bit you just have to know the circumstances and make sure you execute a little bit better in those critical situations and keep yourself in the game and put a little bit more pressure on the opposing team.


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