BY LESLIE MONTEIRO
(Photo credit: Rich Schultz/Getty Images)
The New York Football Giants won the day with Giants fans. Of course, they did. As P.T. Barnum would say, there’s a sucker born every minute. The Giants do a great job making suckers out of Giants fans.
All it took was two hires to get these suckers on board with the Giants, who hired Joe Schoen as the general manager and Brian Daboll as the head coach. Both men come from the Buffalo Bills organization, and they played a heavy role in the team’s renaissance these last few years.
In theory, it makes sense. But the problem with the hires should be this franchise was not diligent enough in making it. It seemed like John Mara fell in love with Schoen from the start, and he did not seem open to other candidates. The same can be said for the Giants general manager who seemed well-bent on hiring his guy as a coach rather than give Leslie Frazier and Brian Flores a legitimate shot to win the job.
What does it tell you that Schoen hired Daboll as head coach hours later he finished interviewing Frazier? One wonders what was the point of the Giants wasting Flores’ and Frazier’s time if Schoen made up his mind this quickly. It shows right there that the Rooney Rule is nothing more than lip service that teams do, and that the Giants once again failed to make good on their promise to run an open-minded search on the general managers and coaches.
For a franchise that went 22-59 in the last five seasons and 60-102 since winning the Super Bowl, they couldn’t afford to make a hasty hire just like they did.
Go ahead and give Mara and Steve Tisch credit for having the conviction to hire the guys they targeted, but these are the same people that gave Giants fans Dave Gettleman, Ben McAdoo, Pat Shurmur and Joe Judge. It’s hard to give them the benefit of the doubt when their batting average for hiring coaches and GMs is below the Mendoza line that would make Mario Mendoza blush.
Give Mara this. He didn’t interfere in the coaching hire search. He probably wanted a proven head coach in Flores than go with a rookie coach learning on the job again if he had his way.
Schoen seemed all in on Daboll. It helped that he knew what his head coach is about from their days together in Buffalo. He knows his head coach is a good offensive coach, which helped his cause. But most importantly, he knows he can have a collaborative relationship with the head coach than he would with Flores.
This approach is dangerous. The Giants need to hire the best man for the job, not a coach that a general manager feels comfortable with. The state of this sorry franchise requires that.
Flores would have been the right coach for this franchise. He knows what he is doing by winning games, knowing talent and developing players. He has a good track record with the Miami Dolphins by having them overachieve in his time here despite minimal talent.
We know he was fired because he had his problems with Dolphins general manager Chris Grier and several of the players. But that shouldn’t have scared the Giants here. Maybe he grows up and adapts. Maybe he can establish a good working relationship with Schoen. He deserved that opportunity. This should have been where Schoen should have taken a chance rather than hire a guy he felt comfortable working with.
The Giants failed to be open-minded in finding a diversity hire. This was the troubling part of the search. It seemed like they wanted to hire someone that would fit well in the team’s corporate image. This would be a mistake. This is 2022. This shouldn’t be about hiring guys that would fit a mom-and-pop, corporate image. This sure seems like this was what the hiring of Schoen and Daboll was about.
The Giants needed to hire someone who was outgoing and who would engage with the community. They haven’t done that in quite some time. They have to understand this is a community asset, not a private asset. The fans live and die with the Giants. They need a general manager and a head coach that will be transparent at all times.
This was why the Giants needed to be diligent and open-minded here.
Maybe it works. Maybe it doesn’t. I really don’t know.
All I know is the Giants could have done a better job with the general manager and head coach search.
Once again, they haven’t learned from their mistakes.
This should be troubling for a franchise that seems to get it wrong these days.