Not too long ago, NY Giants head coach Brian Daboll got some disappointing news: running backs coach DeAndre Smith was leaving East Rutherford and heading to Indianapolis to join the Colts staff. While that was a bit of a bummer, you knew that Daboll would look far and wide to find a suitable replacement.
He’s already got his guy lined up. According to Mike Kaye of the Charlotte Observer, former Carolina Panthers assistant head coach Jeff Nixon is making the move from the NFC South to the NFC East.
NY Giants hire Jeff Nixon as their new running backs coach
This is a smart move by Daboll, as Nixon has plenty of coaching experience. Things got started for him way back in 1997 as a graduate assistant with Penn State. He previously served on NFL stafffs with the Dolphins, 49ers and Eagles before joining the Panthers in 2020 as the team’s running backs coach.
Nixon was the RBs coach for two seasons before making the switch to assistant head coach in 2022. It looks like Daboll reached out to Nixon to tell him all the great things he, Mike Kafka, Wink Martindale and others are building in the NFC East, and Nixon was left with no choice but to jump at the offer.
The big question for Nixon is which feature running back he’ll be working with extensively next season. The Giants, Daboll and general manager Joe Schoen would love to have Saquon Barkley back, but according to the NY Post’s Paul Schwartz, there’s still ‘a gap’ in the discussions between the two sides.
Because of this, it feels like there’s a strong chance that Barkley could end up signing with a new team in free agency. We’ll have to wait and see what happens there. Regardless of how things go with Saquon, Nixon will be ready to hit the ground running with his new unit in New York. This feels like a great hire across the board by Coach Dabes.