1. NY Giants ownership
During the dismal performance of the franchise that’s lasted over nearly a decade, the NY Giants have had three head coaches and two general managers, and the results have remained primarily the same. While we can all argue which coach or GM we think deserves the most blame, the only constants that have remained for New York are their losing seasons and their ownership group.
If continuous changes are made to the franchise and the results remain the same, at some point ownership needs to take a long hard look into the mirror and do some serious reflection and determine that they are a large part of the problem.
John Mara and Steve Tisch took over as co-owners of the New York Giants following deaths of their fathers Wellington Mara and Bob Tisch in 2005. Much like Jerry Reese, the duo enjoyed immediate success, with their franchise winning two Super Bowls in their first six years of ownership. However, since then it has been tough sledding for the organization.
Perhaps the biggest issue that the Giants have consistently endured during the past decade of losing is the fact that ownership cannot seem to get out of its own way. Owners John Mara, who serves as team president and CEO, and his brother Chris Mara, who serves as the senior vice president of player personnel, want to be highly involved in all roster decisions.
Meanwhile, fellow co-owner Steve Tisch, who serves as the chairman and executive vice president of the Giants has held a more hands-off approach to managing the team. As a result, it has been called into question whether the Maras and Tisch are on the same page with regards to the direction of the team, or if they even have a distinct direction that they plan to take the Giants.
This ownership group is responsible for hiring both Jerry Reese and Dave Gettleman as general managers. However, there are a number of reports that suggest that neither was able to perform their duties to their fullest ability, due to the meddling of ownership.
The biggest problem with those two being the GMs is that it points to ownership’s biggest problem, which is that they are scared to go outside of what they know and are comfortable with, which is a recipe for staying stuck in the past. It’s reasonable to guess that the reason for this is so they can continue to do said meddling, as they prefer to have ‘yes men’ around than someone that would ever challenge their edicts.
It has been reported that the signing Odell Beckham Jr. to the massive contract extension, picking up Eli Manning’s $23.5 million option in 2019 (and keeping him around for so long in general), and a number of other major roster decisions were actually made by John and Chris Mara, rather than Dave Gettleman or Jerry Reese.
John Mara has admitted to being too loyal, which has played a role in hiring former employees such as Gettleman, picking up the expensive option for Eli Manning, signing Beckham Jr. to an extension and a number of other decisions regarding the franchise. Making business decisions based solely on loyalty is rarely a recipe for success.
In addition, they damaged the image of their franchise through their handling of the Tom Coughlin firing and the Eli Manning benching. Both situations ended with ownership providing bizarre reasoning behind how and why each situation played out how they did. Their explanations simply did not jive with the evidence, leaving fans to further doubt ownership’s ability to capably run the organization.
Should the ownership group of the Giants determine that wholesale changes need to be made following the conclusion of this season, those changes need to begin at the highest levels, starting with them. They need to be cognizant that the need to hire a general manager and coaching staff to perform specific tasks within the organization.
The general manager needs to be hired to manage the roster decisions and to select the coaching staff. The ownership group needs to determine whether they feel Gettleman is capable of managing these tasks or if the role needs to go to someone more qualified. Once that determination is made, regardless of the outcome, ownership needs to remove themselves from roster and coaching decisions and allow the general manager to perform the task at hand.
John and Chris Mara and Steve Tisch should not be concerning themselves with roster construction, coaching decisions and the other minutia surrounding the performance of the team. Their job is to manage the day to day operations of the franchise to allow the general manager and his staff to be successful.
In addition, the ownership group needs to sit down and get on the same page. This was something that Wellington Mara and Bob Tisch had to do when they owned the team. However, once the tandem was on the same page, the Giants were able to sustain success.
The New York Giants are a storied franchise that has had a great deal of success, including four Super Bowl championships since the inception of the franchise in 1925. The team has suffered painful losing draughts in the past and have emerged from the to regain prominence. However, this required ownership to change how they do business in an effort to return to their competitive ways and this time around will be no different.
If ownership is able to make the appropriate adjustments, the Giants have a solid young core of players and what could amount to upwards of $100 million in cap space this offseason to add the free agent pieces needed to transform this team into a perennial contender for years to come, restoring the franchise back to the gold standard status it enjoyed for so many years.