Immediately following a disappointing 7-9 season, co-owner John Mara and General Manager Jerry Reese promised dramatic change. And as the 2014 season got underway, they wasted no time in living up to that promise, changing their offensive coordinator, shuffling their offensive coaching staff, adding 40+ contracts to their 2014 payroll and, ultimately, drafting high-character team leaders in the 2014 NFL Draft.
That intense offseason shift is why Mark Eckel of The Star-Ledger believes the Giants are one of six teams who may have reversed their fortunes heading into the 2014 regular season.
If you’ve paid attention to the Giants at all under head coach Tom Coughlin, whenever his team is written off, it bounces back with a good season.
The organization decided the biggest problem with the offense was the way it was coordinated, so they gladly accepted Kevin Gilbride’s “retirement” and hired Ben McAdoo from Green Bay to bring the Packers’ system east. He wasn’t allowed to bring Aaron Rodgers with him, however.
So it will still be Eli Manning under center but with a new-look offensive line, new running backs in free agent Rashad Jennings and rookie Andre Williams, a new receiving threat in first-round pick Odell Beckham and an old receiving threat in free-agent Mario Manningham.
Continuity will certainly be key for the Giants if they wish to turnaround a 7-9 season from a year ago, and that got off to a rocky start following Eli Manning's ankle surgery. But the franchise quarterback appears to be making a rapid turnaround, while the lack of a rookie mini-camp — which many thought was a negative at first — may actually turn out to help the Giants.
But like many offseason prediction, projections and grades, this is all merely speculation until Big Blue gets onto the field.
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