Even though Giants General Manager Jerry Reese didn’t come right out and say that coach Tom Coughlin’s future was secure, the things he said about the veteran coach made it seem like he’s going to get chances to fix things.
While an 0-6 started was completely unforeseen and unacceptable, Reese credited Coughlin with getting them to 2-6 headed into their bye week — which is still just two games out of the NFC East lead.
“Well, this is not Tom’s first rodeo. He’s been around for a while,” Reese said, via Ralph Vaccchiano of the New York Daily News. “The passion that he brings to the table, all of our players can see that. That’s never wavered with him. For him to keep this team together, I think that shows how much respect the players have for him and what he’s done for the organization.”
Of course, there are other factors to consider here. If Coughlin can’t get this season back in the boat, he will have missed the playoffs four of the last five years. The fact he won a Super Bowl in the other (2011) counts to his favor, along with the other Lombardi Trophy he coached them to after the 2007 season.
So while Reese has to answer questions about the coach’s future, he doesn’t seem to be pessimistic about it.
“Yeah, coach Coughlin, he’s a heck of a football coach,” Reese said. “He didn’t forget how to coach either, at this point, regardless of what our record looks like. He’s still an outstanding football coach. . . .
“This is a big spot for him and I would never bet against him. He’s done a really nice job. When you’re 0-6, your team can just say, ‘You know what? I’m throwing in the towel.’ But our players have continued to play hard, continued to battle even though we haven’t played as well as we’d like to play. They’re still out there battling. They come to work and work hard. I have total respect for that.”
The two still have to figure out a way to fix the current mess (which would begin with getting their quarterback to throw it to his own team more often), and there were no guarantees for the 67-year-old coach.
But Reese didn’t sound like a man ready to put the blame all on him, either.