Joe Schoen, the 42-year-old assistant general manager for the Bills, is reportedly finalizing a deal to become the New York Giants new general manager. Schoen, once officially signed, will replace Dave Gettleman, who retired two weeks ago following a disappointing 4-13 season and a 19-46 four-year run as head football man for the Giants.
"We are pleased and proud to name Joe as our general manager," said Giants president John Mara in a statement released by the team. "Throughout our search, Joe impressed us with his ability to communicate a progressive and comprehensive vision for our team. His philosophy and collaborative approach to building a roster and coaching staff align with what we were looking for in a general manager."
"Joe is the kind of exceptional leader we sought to oversee our football operations," added chairman Steve Tisch int he same team-issued statement. "We will do whatever it takes to support Joe's vision and strategic plan for success. We are excited to begin this next chapter with Joe as our general manager."
Schoen (pronounced SHANE), who is expected to hit the ground running for the Giants immediately, will be officially introduced as the team’s new general manager on Monday via a Zoom press conference. One of his first tasks will be to lead the team in its head coaching search.
Schoen, who had also drawn interest from the Chicago Bears for their general manager vacancy, was the first of the initial nine candidates to meet with Giants team ownership.
"It is an honor to accept the position of general manager of the New York Giants," said Schoen. "I want to thank John Mara and Steve Tisch and their families for this tremendous opportunity. And obviously I am grateful to Brandon and the Bills for the experience I have had in Buffalo.
"Now, the work begins. My immediate focus is to hire a head coach, with whom I will work in lockstep with to create a collaborative environment for our football operations. We will cast a wide net--it can be former head coaches, first-time head coaches--but more importantly, it has to be a person who possesses the ability to lead an organization and the ability to motivate and develop players.
"On the personnel side, we will begin to evaluate our roster and prepare for the draft and free agency. Our goal is to build a roster that will be competitive, have depth, and most importantly, win football games."
Schoen, a native of Elkhart, Indiana, graduated from DePauw University in 2001 with a communications degree. He was a quarterback as a freshman and wide receiver his final three years, serving as a captain during his senior season.
Determined to pursue a career in football, Schoen worked his way from the ground up, starting with a ticketing department internship with the Carolina Panthers, where he initially got to know Brandon Beane, who would later become his boss.
Schoen was promoted to a scouting assistant for the Panthers after his internship wrapped, and he would spend the next seven years (2001-2007) working in personnel, first as a scouting assistant and then as a southeast and southwest scout.
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In 2008, Schoen went to the Dolphins, who counted Giants Hall of Fame head coach Bill Parcells among its top executives. Schoen’s first role in Miami was that of a national scout. He was promoted a few years later to the position of assistant director of college scouting where, he assisted in the preparation, assessment, and acquisition of potential professional and collegiate free agents. He was also a key role player in Miami’s NFL draft preparations, including evaluation and draft board construction.
Schoen reunited with Beane in Buffalo in 2017 after Beane was named the Bills general manager. Since teaming up with Beane, Schoen and the rest of the personnel department have put together four out of five seasons with a winning record and, including this year, have made four playoff appearances (including reaching the conference championship game in 2020).
In their last three seasons, the Bills have recorded double-digit wins and won the AFC East in 2020 and 2021.
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Schoen's first big decision will be selecting the Giants' new head coach. Here is a look at some candidates that could be on his short list.
Cowboys Defensive Coordinator Dan Quinn: Quinn has been in hot demand of late after transforming a historically bad Cowboys defense that in 2020 had allowed a franchise record 473 points into a formidable unit. He’s in such demand that the Giants reportedly didn’t want to wait until selecting their new general manager to file the necessary paperwork to receive permission to interview Quinn for the head coaching post.
Quinn was part of the Super Bowl XLVIII winning Seahawks team. As the Falcons head coach (2015–2020), his teams finished 46-44 (including postseason) and made the playoffs twice during his tenure (including the Super Bowl in 2016 and the Divisional Round in 2017).
Former Dolphins Head Coach Brian Flores: Schoen would certainly be familiar with the Brooklyn born Flores with the Bills having faced Miami twice per year. Before being hired by Miami to be their head coach, he spent 11 seasons as an assistant coach with the New England Patriots after spending three years with the organization as a scouting assistant.
Flores, one of five sons of Honduran immigrants who emigrated to the United States in the 1970s was a three-year letter winner and two-year starter at linebacker at Boston College, where he was a part of four bowl-winning teams, and he was a member of the 2003 Big East All-Academic Team.
Bills Offensive Coordinator Brian Daboll. Daboll has a strong coaching pedigree which includes serving as the offensive coordinator at Alabama in 2017, with whom he won a national championship. Daboll also served as an assistant on Bill Belichick’s Patriots staff, where he spent 11 seasons and won five Super Bowl titles as an assistant (XXXVI, XXXVIII, XXXIX, XLIX, and LI).
Daboll won the 2020 AP Assistant Coach of the Year award for his work with guiding the Bills offense to second overall in both yards (396.4) and points (31.3) per game in 2020; improving the team’s scoring production by 11.7 points per game from 2019 to 2020; and developing quarterback Josh Allen into an All-Pro.