This post contains affiliate links. “As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.”
EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ – Joe Schoen took the stage Wednesday afternoon wearing a crisp navy blue suit, matching blue-patterned tie and a New York Giants pin that shone on his lapel. They were accompanied by a pair of chic suede designer running shoes and a smile that matched the performance by becoming one of 32 NFL general managers in the world.
This scene marked the beginning of a new Giants era. One, they hope, is very different from the previous four years under Dave Gettleman.
The shoe had the look, feel and words of a very different general manager than the Giants have ever had.
“I believe in [analytics]. Any tool that can help us win matches or give us a competitive edge, we will continue to push the framework and find out what it is, he said.
Pushing on the envelope was not a hallmark of Gettleman’s tenure. It was more trying to catch up with the rest of the league, not just with analytics and technology, but pretty much everything – including talent.
The shoe, 42, was hired away from the Buffalo Bills, where he was assistant GM, to reshape and restore the once-proud Giants. He even mentioned something on Wednesday during a radio interview on WFAN as basic as updating the magnets they have used since eternity in the pull-up room for a digital version. Simple, but probably necessary. The Giants’ decision makers should have every tool at hand just like the rest of the league.
It’s just scratching the surface of what’s going to change in the end, and that’s part of what impressed the ownership.
“His vision of how to build a team that combines all the analysis and sports science, and how to build a staff and different roles for each person on the staff – how he wants our scouts to act, how he wants our professional personnel department must act … There are many thoughts behind it, “said co-owner John Mara.
“They’ve obviously had success with it in Buffalo, and we have to make some changes in how we do things around here, and that was one of the big reasons we wanted to bring someone in from the outside. who can see and see … what we do well, see what we do bad to, and just change things to a point where everyone is on the same page going forward. “
That’s what’s going to happen after a decade of poor performance. The Giants have reached the playoffs once in the last 10 years and went ugly 19-46 under Gettleman. They go from an inpatient “dinosaur” to a general manager who unsolicitedly said he wanted a “progressive” head coach.
That alone seems to be progress. The days of pointing from the opponents’ 40-yard line for the sake of the field position seem to be over.
“Intelligence is important. I think you’re progressive in your approach to coaching, whether it’s with analysis, when to go, when not to go, when to tip, I think you have to be open to all that, “Schoen said of some of the traits he’s looking for as the Giants continue their search for a new coach. “You have to be open to sports performance, strength and fitness. You have to listen to the experts in their field. Those are some of the key qualities that I look for when we move forward.”
Schoen and Mara said a coach hiring would likely happen early next week. The other changes in the organization can be subtle at first. For example, the Schoen is steep in terms of evaluating everyone in the building before making any movements.
And the coach will still report to the day-to-day manager.
“Yes, that’s fair to say. That’s the structure I believe in when the head coach reports to the general manager,” Mara said.
Ownership will still be involved. This is not a hands-off group, and Mara spoke on Wednesday that hiring coaches is a real collaborative process. He, along with his brother, Chris, and co-owner Steve Tisch have been in every single personal interview. Mara even denied that Schoen would have more say in finding a coach than his predecessors at GM.
While it is somewhat worrying that a process that has failed the Giants several times remains largely unchanged, the results have a chance to be different with a more forward-thinking general manager who saw firsthand in Buffalo how a struggling organization can be transformed into a Super Bowl challenger.
Schoen is the first GM the Giants have hired outside their family in more than 40 years, and his willingness to consider new ideas at all levels of the organization may be the biggest change the Giants have needed.
“If it’s going to help us in the draft evaluation process or the free agency process with the evaluations or contract value, and who are these players comparing to, if it’s going to help us with our training plan to keep the guys healthy, then keep guys on the field, “If guys run too much or work too hard or there are signs – be open to the information. It’s part of the puzzle,” said Schoen. “It’s not going to drive the whole process, but it’s another tool we need to gain the competitive advantage we can and make the best decisions we can for the New York Giants.”
It must be better than operating as they have done, with a competitive disadvantage.