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For the Giants, Pressing the Reset Button Was Easy; Now Comes the Hard Part

The reset button has been pushed and the housecleaning has begun at the top. now the pressure is on ownership to finally get it right.

Over the next several days, there will probably be different variations of stories and tweets coming out about just how bad things really were inside 1925 Giants Drive.

But none of that matters in a lost season that was part of four years--longer if you count the years following the 2011 season, the last time the Giants won a Super Bowl--in which the Giants organization seemed to stray off the path of respectability in terms of being a competitive team that opponents feared from top to bottom.

What matters now that co-owners John Mara and Steve Tisch have finally hit the reset button--a move long overdue for this franchise--is where they go from here.

The search for a new general manager--the right general manager--begins today. The reported list includes several intriguing names of candidates whose current teams have had far more success than the Giants in building rosters stocked with sustainable talent worthy of second contracts.

The list also reportedly doesn't include a single member of the current front office, a much applauded and needed change likely brought about from the owners' realization that their comfort in knowing the person they hired was not doing them any favors in terms of growing as an organization regarding how they did things. 

The core of the Giants' problems for years has been personnel. The bad drafts since have failed to yield more than a small handful of players who have earned second contracts from the team. 

That trend appears to be likely to continue with the 2018 draft class, the first of the Dave Gettleman era, where, of those six picks, three players--Saquon Barkley, Will Hernandez, and Lorenzo Carter--finished the 2021 season with the team.

Of those three, only one (Barkley) is likely to be back in 2022--assuming he's not traded--since the others are set to hit free agency, and the Giants aren't exactly brimming with salary-cap space.

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Compounding the personnel issues is the salary cap situation. Five players currently account for nearly 50 percent of the team's 2022 salary cap, thanks to some unconventional tactics the Giants took to expedite the roster restocking process last year.

Injuries aside--and yes, they were a factor--the new general manager, along with the new head coach, must enter into a marriage of sorts in which they share similar ideals on the macro issues on how to restore Giants pride. This must include an objective and honest look at those players deemed by the previous coaching staff as cornerstones and figuring out how to build around them.

Whether that means riding it out another year with quarterback Daniel Jones, the third-most important piece of the puzzle and currently the last man standing, or going in another direction, the decision made here will be a big one that has clear ramifications for the franchise moving forward.

And then there is the matter of finding the right head coach. The Giants have tried going the newcomer route twice, with Judge and Ben McAdoo before him. They also tried plucking a coach off the carousel (Pat Shurmur). 

With this team in need of someone able to take the personnel as provided by the general manager and turn it into a competitive group, do the Giants roll the dice on another first-time head coach with a solid record as a coordinator, or do they dip back into the carousel for someone with experience to lead this rebuild?   

As emotions calm down from a disappointing season that fell wildly off the rails, calmer and cooler heads should prevail. A complete turnaround from worst to first shouldn't be ruled out--other teams have done it before--but a more realistic scenario is we're looking at least a two-year process to allow for the new seeds that will be planted to take root and start to blossom. 


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