From the moment the New York Giants fired Pat Shurmur on the Monday following the conclusion of Week 17, it seemed like their next head coach was ultimately inevitable. Former Baylor Bears head man and New York-born Matt Rhule was the clear front-runner to fill the void left behind by Shurmur.
However, as we know now, the marriage between Rhule and the Giants never materialized, as the team opted to go with former Patriots assistant Joe Judge instead. John Mara, New York’s president, CEO, and co-owner took the time following Judge’s introductory press conference to comment on what went wrong between Rhule and the organization.
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John Mara Addresses the Matt Rhule Saga
“If you asked me a week ago, 10 days ago, I would have said it probably would have been a long shot.” That was New York Giants’ John Mara’s response to discussing the unlikely rise of Joe Judge from fringe candidate to the new head coach of the G-Men, per SNY.
So how did Judge jump the perceived front-runner Matt Rhule for the job in New York? Well, apparently Judge’s interview was so phenomenal, that Mara and team officials knew halfway through that this was the new face of the New York Giants.
From there, Mara states that the team still had plans to proceed with the interview they had set for Tuesday with Rhule out of respect for the new Carolina Panthers head coach. However, once the Giants caught wind of the offer that Rhule had received from Carolina, they decided to move on and shift their focus back to Judge.
“We were still going to interview Matt…his agent called me early Tuesday morning to say that he had a deal in place. It was a seven-year deal and I had a brief conversation with Steve [Tisch] and Dave [Gettleman], and we agreed that we were not going there.”
“For a new head coach in the NFL, I just didn’t think that was a reasonable way to go…we weren’t going with a seven-year deal with anybody, but more importantly, we had somebody we were excited about. So we went ahead and made Joe the coach.”
You can see Mara address the Rhule situation in deeper detail in the video clip below provided by SNY.
Joe Judge Wins the Press Conference
We all know the age-old “win the press conference” saying. It’s something that numerous coaches have done over the years, most of which tend to eventually reward their organizations with a less than optimal return on investment. However, those coaches tend to win the press conference for all the wrong reasons, by being loud, brash, and at times playful. Think the infamous Rex Ryan introductory press conference for the New York Jets years back.
Yet, new Giants head coach Joe Judge seems to have stolen the show at his press conference for all the right reasons. Judge, a guy who was an unknown commodity just a handful of days ago, demonstrated the confidence, intelligence, and moxie that led the Giants to pull the trigger on him as the new man in charge.
Judge’s conference was seemingly well-received across the board, and it was quotes like this one that had Giants fans ready to go strap up their old high school cleats and go to war for their new head coach.
“I’m going to do everything in my power every day to make sure the people of this city and this area turn on the TV or sit in the stadium seats and are proud to say we’re their New York Giants”
No one knows how good of a head coach Judge will turn out to be, but from the looks of it, things in New York are trending up.
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