It's no secret that the branches of the Bill Belichick coaching tree haven't exactly been able to replicate the success of the trunk himself.
But Giants head coach Joe Judge is trying to change that. Thus far, his methods, which have included more intense and physical practices that include penalty laps if they mess up, have drawn criticism by former players turned media analysts and a certain former Giants team executive.
But for the men who are at the center of the lab with Judge, the Giants players, they don't appear to have any issues with what Judge has asked of them so far.
That's probably because the 38-year-old head coach has gone the extra step of laying out the reasons behind everything he's asking from the team so that they understand and buy in.
Now in his second season with the Giants, veteran wide receiver Golden Tate is currently playing for his second member of the Belichick coaching tree. In his final season with the Lions in 2018, he played for Matt Patricia, once Belichick's defensive coordinator.
As a member of the Detroit Lions from 2014-18, Tate went into his final season in Detroit under the leadership of head coach Matt Patricia, who coached alongside Judge, then the Patriots' special teams coordinator.
"There's some similarities for sure," Tate said of Judge and Patricia's coaching styles during a video press conference. "This is a different camp because of the COVID situation ... but I haven't thought about it too much."
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According to ESPN, Patricia also ran a tough practice requiring Lions players and coaches to run penalty laps. Like Judge and Belichick, Patricia apparently subscribes to the theory that every action one takes on the field has consequences. If someone commits a potentially costly mental mistake, actions will have more of an impact.
"Everything we do has a purpose," Judge said when asked about his methods. "I'm a big believer in educating our team in why we're doing things the way we're doing, that we're not just blindly out there winging it and trying to force punishment."
Tate believes that Judge's emphasis on details, particularly in the teaching he and his assistant coaches do on a daily basis, is a good push in the right direction for the Giants, a team that has won 12 games in the last three seasons and which has played some of the most sloppy and undisciplined ball in recent years.
"So far I've really enjoyed what Joe has brought to the table. One of the things I like most about him is that he and (offensive coordinator) Jason Garrett are very detailed," Tate said. "They teach the game in detail so that once we get in the game it should come easy and we should know what's expected of us."
And it's that attention to detail which gives Tate confidence that the Giants' 2020 offense will improve from last season after finishing 22nd in the NFL in total offense.
"No matter what it is whether we're in a correct stance, no matter where it is whether it's a walk-through or full-speed, we're getting our steps down correctly in our routes and things like that I think are going to make a huge difference in September when we start playing."
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