How has fan loyalty to Big Blue changed over the last two decades?
2000’s Coughlin, McAdoo and Spagnuolo
In the last decade, the Giants’ brand became better known with changes to the roster. The Giants were fortunate to draft Philip Rivers and then trade him for Eli Manning in 2004. Previously, a top–prospect Kurt warner did not have the same amount fandom as Eli. The Giants were in a slump and Eli provided the public with hope and change.
The coaching staff during this time period created a perception that the Giants had the expertise ad technical skills but would lose commonly due to lack of execution. During this period fans could be attached to the great Tiki Barber who is the franchise’s most valuable running back.
Met Life Stadium receives the reputation of a shrine to Giants fans who stuck with the team from the 1990s onward. The best part of being a Giants fan in this decade was not knowing whether the team could reach the playoffs given the lack of previous success, but always betting in their favor out of a faith in the organization. This was maybe when the Giants’ brand was at its highest watermark.
When the 2007-2008 season arrived, all of the waiting and patience of East Coast football fans identifying with Big Blue received the answer that was pined for. A couple of season later, the brand increased in significance when the 2008 “catch” resulting in a plays which would lead to a Superbowl win revealed that the Giants’ success was not a fluke.
Then, someone, anyone with ties to New York, however slight and however distant from New York City, could feel a sense of pride whenever the team’s name was mentioned in Sports Illustrated or ESPN the magazine.