Top candidates to replace Joe Judge if NY Giants’ John Mara moves on

New York Giants head coach Joe Judge in the first half at MetLife Stadium on Sunday, Dec. 19, 2021, in East Rutherford.Nyg Vs Dal
New York Giants head coach Joe Judge in the first half at MetLife Stadium on Sunday, Dec. 19, 2021, in East Rutherford.Nyg Vs Dal /
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Joe Judge is losing support from the NY Giants’ fanbase, should they consider a new Head Coach?

The NY Giants are again sloppy, undisciplined, and offensively (pun intended) hapless. This has to be somewhat indicative of Head Coach Joe Judge.

Never has this been more the case than following a listless, uninspired 21-6 loss to the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday afternoon at MetLife Stadium.

Judge has had a tumultuous tenure through 30 games. He is 9-21 now and has started slow the first 8 games of both seasons. The Giants have been adamant that Judge is the right man for the job despite the rocky start to his career.

People will bring up Bill Parcells’ slow start with the Giants (or even Belichick getting fired by Cleveland) but this isn’t the 1980s or 90s anymore.

In today’s 2021 NFL world, Head Coaches only get so much time to prove themselves before they get the can. Joe Judge is starting to run out of time on his coaching clock in New York and he’s fully arrived on the hot seat. It seems deserving given the utterly disappointing state of the team.

NY Giants owner John Mara seems to be steadfast in his commitment to Judge, and a believer in the culture that Judge is trying to build. But, as losses continue to mount, and the effort lacks as it did against the Cowboys, it is fair to wonder if Mara has a change of heart when the offseason begins.

If the NY Giants do decide to move on from Judge at the end of the season, it’d be another stain and a bad look for a once-proud franchise that’s seemingly lost its direction.

Here are 5 head coach candidates the NY Giants could consider if they fire Joe Judge.

Candidate #1: NY Giants’ Defensive Coordinator Patrick Graham

The first choice seems like it could be the most surprising and the least surprising at the same time.

NY Giants defensive coordinator Patrick Graham has been touted by Joe Judge, and others around the league as a possible and legitimate head coaching candidate.

Sources continue to reiterate to FanSided that Graham will likely be on the short-list for several teams looking for head coaches this offseason.

Graham has been the NY Giants’ defensive coordinator the last two seasons. He ran an excellent defense last year but it’s been a much rockier run in year two. Graham and Judge are close friends from their time in New England together. There is great respect, familiarity, and mutual friends in their similar coaching circles.

Graham replacing his boss but more important his friend, it’d be a highly awkward and uncomfortable situation.

However, NFL head coaching jobs don’t grow on trees and neither do head coaching offers. If you’re offered the chance to run a team in the world’s biggest media market, with one of the best and most rabid sports towns in the world, and the chance to fix a broken franchise, why not rise to the opportunity?

Graham could make an intriguing head coaching candidate. He is well-received, respected, and liked by his players and colleagues alike (including Judge). Graham has been dubbed a mad scientist due to his degree and playing career at Yale. He is an Ivy League grad who is intelligent, eloquent, and has been around the NFL for a while.

The NY Giants do not like to make drastic changes. Even more so, the team avoids going with external options or those unfamiliar to the organization already. It would be typical of the Giants to at least explore the option of hiring Graham. As uncomfortable a situation it may be for Graham personally, he’d have to say yes to the NY Giants’ head coaching gig. It seems unlikely, if not improbable, but had to be acknowledged.