The New York Giants Kept Joe Judge, and That’s a Huge Mistake
Update: I wrote this before the news broke that Judge was staying. That said, I still believe that it's wrong. Here's why.
5:01 on the clock. Second quarter. New York Giants are playing their Week 18 game against the Washington Football Team, and after a strong showing by the defense, only trailed in the game, 3-0.
It's third-and-nine, and the Giants are inside their own five-yard line.
This play is the tip of the iceberg. It's a water droplet in the Pacific Ocean. It's one of a million-and-one examples of why the New York Giants need to pull out the broom, and the mop, and clean house.
The Giants End Their Season at 4-13
The New York Giants appeared to have taken a step forward in 2020. Though the final record was 6-10, the team finished 5-3 in their final eight games, and appeared to have re-loaded their offense during the offseason. Kenny Golladay, Kyle Rudolph and first-round draft pick Kadarius Toney all surrounded Daniel Jones, and the team began to be mentioned in the NFC Wild Card conversation.
Then, training camp opened, and it was downhill from there.
No, seriously, that's where the season ended. The team got into a full-on brawl roughly three days into camp, with quarterback Daniel Jones at the bottom of the pile. Kelvin Benjamin was a part of the team for five minutes, was cut by the team, cussed out the team's leadership, and left the premesis.
From there, it was injuries, COVID-19, setbacks and more, and at no point did it seem like the team was ever able to hit its stride while healthy. You can legitimately blame injury luck for why the beginning of the Giants' season went off the rails.
How the season ended, however, can be blamed on pure and unfiltered incompetency. Injuries may have saved Joe Judge's job during the season, but in my opinion, we've passed that threshold.
It's Time for the New York Giants to Clean House
Here's the bombshell: as reported by Jared Schwartz of the New York Post, Fox Sports' Jay Glazer said on the record that players in the New York Giants' locker room want Joe Judge gone. Again, no player is on record, but Glazer is known as a pretty reliable source.
Regardless of whether players feel that way or not, it's time to clean house, and it's time to start fresh. The team came out of their bye week, and proceeded to go 1-7 in their final eight games, including six consecutive losses to end the regular season. The offense scored more than 13 points ONCE during their final eight games of the season. The offense also committed multiple turnovers (anywhere between two and four) in each of the final five games of the year.
Firing offensive coordinator Jason Garrett was the right thing to do, but clearly, was not the solution to the problem. Judge, Freddie Kitchens, and whoever else had a hand in the offensive gameplan cannot return next year. Patrick Graham's defense actually performed well given the circumstances, and if the team's incoming general manager wants to keep him around to run the defense, I'm comfortable with it.
That being said, we know a change in general manager is already going to happen. A change in the coaching staff is needed now. Not tomorrow. Not after 2022.
Once a new GM, and a new coach, are in place, then changes to the roster can happen. Those changes are secondary, as of right now.