New NY Giants offensive line coach Dave DeGuglielmo opens up about the challenges of taking over a new position group midseason
This isn’t new NY Giants offensive line coach Dave DeGuglielmo’s first rodeo.
DeGuglielmo, promoted to offensive line coach from consultant before he even stepped foot in Quest Diagnostics Training Center, begins his fifth NFL job since 2016 replaces Marc Colombo who was fired on Nov. 18.
“It would be the equivalent of a plumber being called to a different company,” DeGuglielmo explained Tuesday. “To do a plumbing job. Generally speaking, this is what I do. Sometimes the circumstances are a little more beneficial to me personally, but there’s a solid system here.”
Speaking with a thick Italian accent, DeGuglielmo certainly fits the bill of a lunch pale carrying football coach arriving in East Rutherford and reuniting with head coach Joe Judge for the first time since they were both members of Bill Belichick’s staff with the New England Patriots back in 2015 after stints with the Chargers, Colts, and a couple cups of coffee with the Dolphins.
“Joe Judge and Jason Garrett have a solid system in place,” DeGuglielmo said. “I’m just trying to keep things in the proper direction. It’s not complicated or anything like that.
“I’m doing the adjustment. I’m learning the language, if you will. It’s like taking a job in Spain and not knowing Spanish. I still know how to do my job, I just need to learn what language I’m in. That’s the adjustment I need to make.”
DeGuglielmo inherits an ascending offensive line that has steadily improved in recent weeks that features first-round draft choice rookie Andrew Thomas at left tackle and a center in Nick Gates, who has played every snap this season despite never playing the position at any level prior to Week 1 against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Despite the unorthodox nature of the Giants rotating offensive lineman, such as getting rookie Matt Peart reps at right tackle while spelling Cam Fleming or finding snaps for rookie guard Shane Lemieux, DeGuglielmo says he’s on board.
He’s also not going to reinvent the wheel.
“I can’t put in a lot of my terminology,” DeGuglielmo said. “We’re already midstream, it’s about the players. It’s not about the players, it’s about the comfort level of the players and communicating things … In any good program, guys are constantly being coached. Traditionally the best teams in the league, they don’t do the same things every week. There are things that are tweaked schematically or fundamentally. Maybe we alter a set, a hand placement or a stagger in our base. It’s miniscule, and it’s something that may not show up on tape, but it will help with productivity.
“Things are going in a good direction right now. The guys are great about working hard in improving in the ways that we’re talking about. I’m trying to learn their language and talk in a way that they’ll understand it.”
Matt Lombardo is the site expert for GMenHQ, and writes Between The Hash Marks each Wednesday for FanSided. Follow Matt on Twitter: @MattLombardoNFL.