The New York Giants are bringing back general manager Dave Gettleman, Giants co-owner John Mara announced on Wednesday.
“I think that the way Dave and [head coach Joe Judge] worked together, I thought our personnel decisions were really sound this year,” Mara said via Zoom. “I feel better about our roster than I have in years, and I think the two of them working together have started the building process of something that can have sustained success going forward. I just didn’t think making a change at this point was something that was beneficial.”
The decision guarantees a fourth year of the Gettleman regime on the blue side of MetLife Stadium despite the Giants posting double-digit loss totals in each of the executive’s first three seasons at the helm.
And he hasn’t impressed much along the way, either, as he’s left unfilled promises and head-scratching moves in his wake despite a 6-10 2020 season under Judge that is considered progress.
Amongst his first was a vow to build the Giants’ offensive line into a formidable unit “once and for all.” It took three years to finally show some sort of promise, though the book is still out on whether they took the right offensive lineman with the No. 4 pick of the 2020 NFL Draft, taking Andrew Thomas out of Georgia instead of the likes of Mekhi Becton or Tristan Wirfs.
He admitted to possessing outdated philosophies, claiming he prioritized defense — which was one of the league’s worst in his first two years of his tenure — over offense. While the James Bradberry, Blake Martinez, and Leonard Williams acquisitions certainly worked out, much of the credit is owed to defensive coordinator Patrick Graham, who will pass up head-coaching offers to remain with the Giants in 2021.
The Giants’ most successful teams have always been predicated on good defenses, but Gettleman showed that he was late to the party in his realization that the NFL is an offensive league. That’s clear with just how much the Giants’ attack struggled in 2020 even with Saquon Barkley sidelined for the year with a torn ACL.
His transactional history has often made headlines for the wrong reasons more than the right ones. Before the selection of Thomas, Gettleman mystified the NFL world by taking Daniel Jones sixth-overall in 2019 when he was expected to be available around their second pick at No. 17.
“You guys are going to say I’m doubling down, but I’m very happy with what we have in Daniel Jones and Andrew Thomas,” Gettleman said.
He traded away star wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. that has left a void at the No. 1 pass-catcher spot that still has not been filled. That was after signing him to a huge contract and defiantly exclaiming that “we didn’t sign Odell to trade him.”
He let All-Pro safety Landon Collins walk, traded linebacker Alec Ogletree, and whiffed on the Nate Solder and Patrick Omameh signings to bolster that offensive line.
“We made some miscalculations in 2018 and I think we — to a certain extent — paid for that this year by not having some of those players available,” Mara said. “There was no question about it. I thought in 2019, things got a little bit better. Certainly this past offseason I thought the personnel decisions that we made, both in the draft and in free agency, were significantly better.
In his three seasons with Gettleman as the architect, the Giants are 15-33.
“Of course it’s disappointing. It’s disappointing for me personally, it’s disappointing for the organization, I’m disappointed for the players and the fans,” Gettleman said. “Last time I double-checked, it’s about winning, and I’m very disappointed to this point.”
“We’re on the right track right now, we’ve done some really good stuff the last few years. We’re gonna fix this. We’re gonna fix this.”