Quotes from Peter Drucker

The NY Giants are in complete disarray. Consider:

  1. Failed Architecture
  2. Poor Personnel Decisions
  3. Poor Drafting
  4. Poor Coaching
  5. Injuries
  6. Excessive Loyalty
  7. Nepotism
  8. Overconfidence Bias of Ownership
  9. A Metaphor

We have discussed many of these items ad nauseum, so part of this will be reviewed/linked to past discussions and other parts will be expanded upon.

  1. Failed Architecture. We have dedicated full blog posts to how to build a franchise. QB, Protect QB, Rush the QB. Read it and (Giants fans) weep. I will throw in one more little nugget from a completely different angle… professional bettors. Which positions move the point spread for the people betting the games? QB, obviously. And that is consistent with what everyone knows. The difference? Go to minute 14. “All you running back fans, that means zero in NFL betting… The bettors really key on Offensive Line problems… Offensive line play has a direct correlation to offensive production. It just shows you how strong that the wiseguys believe in Offensive Line play. It is a huge thing and essentially goes unnoticed. The media and the public just like the star names. They don’t care about Linemen, and that is what the true gamblers care about.”
    What has this NY Giants blog been preaching for literally 12 seasons? Drafting Offensive Line to replace Diehl, Seubert, O’Hara, Snee and McKenzie. And it still has not been done. Money talks. It is GMs making Offensive Tackles the second highest salaries of any position. It is professional bettors watching Offensive Line. This should tell you all you need to do know about what drives success, and conversely what has been driving the Giants failure the past decade.
  2. Poor Personnel Decisions. Apologies for a quick regurgitation here of some of the lowlights….
    Nate Solder, Leonard Williams (cost), Omameh, Stewart, Martin, win now in 2018, no offseason OL depth coming into 2021 preseason and then reactively scrambling, All-in on 2021 w massive cap hangover coming, Baker (study) risks, separating from Zeitler/Tomlinson. And we did not even touch on Reese.
  3. Poor Drafting. Our previous post documented with Twitter timestamps a comparison of the Giants selections vs the UltimateNYG blog selections. While these were the Round 1 high profile names, we hit on 9 of 11. The Giants hit on 4 of 11.
  4. Poor Coaching. We need to show you 2 plays. The first play is from Week 11 vs the Bucs. FUGLY.The second play is from Week 16 vs the Eagles. Loss of 4 yards. FUGLY.You can make up all the excuses you want. Instead of competitive football, this is an embarrassment. If it is one player, like DeAndre Baker not learning his assignments, you can blame it on Gettleman for ignoring the (league-wide) knowledge of his risks coming out of college. In this case, it is bad coaching, because at least 2 out of 3 players on offense are running the wrong route, and all 3 route runners are making bad blocks/assignments. While there was more dysfunction with McAdoo (players disrespected him) and Shurmur (not a Head Coach), Judge just seems to be in way over his head and players are checking out. See #8 below for the cluelessness of ownership with regard to the Head Coach.

    One more little side nugget for evidence of season-long coaching failure… the Giants have been outscored 76-0 in the last 2 minutes of the first half. You can forget about injuries, amplify poor clock management, factor out meaningless garbage-time points, and that is what you are left with when the chips are down in crunch time.
  5. Injuries. This website author was the premier NY Giants blog for correctly arguing that the malady of injuries from 2013-2015, three successive years of dead last injuries, was not just bad luck. To once again finish in dead last in injuries in 2021 is a symptom of continued dysfunction of the coaching/medical staff. Gettleman bragged how Ronnie Barnes (more on him next) cleared the signing of offseason Free Agency signings with injuries/risk. Also, Glenn Warciski of New York Giants Underground pointed out that Kadarius Toney had an injury history in college. So when we see a pileup in ManGamesLost, it is not a complete coincidence. Note also the comparison between the Titans, Ravens and Giants, in terms of wins versus mangameslost. Vrabel deserves to be Coach of the Year for this alone.
  6. Excessive Loyalty. Mara does not like it when he goes through Head Coaches & GMs like a race car goes through tires. The Maras love Ronnie Barnes. Barnes is at their beck & call seemingly 24/7/365. Antonio Pierce joked about how much juice Barnes had. Juice… as in, power. It goes way past tenure. Barnes reports directly to ownership. This means the only one who can touch (fire) Barnes is essentially John Mara himself. If I am the GM and Barnes gives me the green light to draft Toney and sign Golladay, and both players miss a lot of football, at what point is there accountability from the medical side? How can there be any accountability? Barnes has been through 4 GMs. When does this loyalty end and responsibility to performance begin. No, Barnes is not the Strength & Conditioning coach. But when you are dead last in injuries 4 times in the past 9 years, that is 2 S&C coaches, 2 GMs, and 1 SVP of Medical Services. During these 9 years, the Giants have had 1 winning season. Where is the accountability for the product?
  7. Nepotism. Chris Mara and Tim McDonnell are 2 of the 3 highest ranking members of the Player Personnel department. They are also Maras. There are 23 people in this department. I am sure some are good, but more are not delivering. They could get rid of most of them and hire our Draft Analyst. When you are 22-58 and you have rot without accountability, how can it be any worse? Frankly, given how we documented the outperformance we were able to deliver, in our Round 1 selections vs this franchise, it starts at the top with Chris Mara, whose ascendency to the top post of SVP of Player Personnel took place… when?…. in 2011, right when this Franchise (between Reese AND Gettleman) started tanking big time in the Draft. Connect those dots.
  8. Overconfidence Bias of Ownership. We have seen the latest genius of ownership with the proclamation that Judge is coming back, no matter who the GM is. Given just 2 plays we selected in #4 above, wouldn’t you logically want a Professional General Manager (ie one who does not do this for hobby?!) to make that determination? This is putting the cart in front of the horse. Frankly, we have stated this before but it needs to be emphasized— ownership has only proven one thing over the past 10 years— it is not doing anything to help this franchise and is actually outright harming it on a regular basis with its input. It needs to get out of the way and let an OUTSIDER make ALL of the decisions.
  9. A Metaphor. The eight items above are serious notes. The erosion of trust from the fanbase, the loss of any semblance of home field advantage, and the prostituting of PSLs have completely bankrupted goodwill. When the Giants decided to give PSL owners a free medium Pepsi, the derision from the fanbase went to a whole new level. If you thought it could not get any worse, it did…. PSL owners found out that the promotion was only good for the owner himself, not for the other seats s/he licensed. I was reminded of the line in the movie, Trading Places, where the rich commodity barons give the servant a $5 Xmas bonus. “I can go to the movies. By myself.” There are simply no words left for this organization. We will leave fans with some words on what they are searching for.

Only three things happen naturally in organizations: friction, confusion, and underperformance. Everything else requires leadership.

The greatest danger in times of turbulence is not the turbulence; it is to act with yesterday’s logic.

If you want something new, you have to stop doing something old.

What gets measured gets managed.

Leadership is defined by results not attributes.

Most leaders don’t need to learn what to do. They need to learn what to stop.

Of all the decisions an executive makes, none is as important as the decisions about people, because they determine the performance capacity of the organization.

Peter Drucker


We need somebody
(Help) not just anybody
(Help) you know we need a GM, help

So much younger than today
(We never need) We Super Bowl’d four along the way
(Now) but now these days are gone (these days are gone)
Jints fans not so self assured
(And now we find) now we find Change is on our minds
To open up the doors

Help us if you can, we’re beaten down
And Jints fans know that Mara’s just a clown
Help us get our team back from lost to found
Won’t you please, please GM me

In oh so many ways
(Our owner’s) our owner’s brain seems to vanish in the haze
(But) but every game and then (game after game)
We feel so insecure
(We know that we) We know that we just need a new GM
From outside, Mara’s never done it before

Help Jints fans if you can, we’re beaten down
And we do appreciate an OLine being ’round
Help us get a yard on the ground
Won’t you please, please GM me

When George was Young, Jints much better than today
We never needed anybody’s help in any way
(Now) but now those days are gone (those days are gone)
We’re not so reassured
(And now we find) now we find Mara’s changed his mind
And closed up the doors

Help Jints fans if you can, we’re beaten down
And we do appreciate the Bears’ pick in 1 Round
Help us get the team from lost to found
Won’t you please, please GM me, Outsider’s key, set us free, ooh

Who the **** is Creed Humphrey?!

If you were watching the Thursday Night Football game between the Chiefs and Chargers, you would know. More importantly, if you were a regular reader of this NY Giants blog, you would have known about C Creed Humphrey on April 21, 2021, a full 8 days prior to the start of the draft and 9 days before Humphrey was selected. We’ll return to Mr. Humphrey a little later, but first some timestamps.

As a reminder, when it comes to the Draft, most do not have the courage or track record to highlight what they said when they said it. In terms of being accountable for what we say, that is why we blog (and tweet). There is a record, timestamps. Twitter is microblogging, and since they timestamp each tweet precisely, it is a great way of not only maintaining a record of what you said BUT WHEN YOU SAID IT.

The record begins in 2011. Twitter was a relatively new medium at the time and that was when we used it the first time live during the NFL Draft. In fact, we were at the Draft in NYC reporting for GMC along with John Fennelly.

2011: LT Anthony Castonzo. 10 Year Franchise Left Tackle. 144 starts, taken 3 picks later at 1.22 by the Colts. Note how my tone will change this decade from one of “surprise” that the Giants wouldn’t do the obvious thing in 2011 by replenishing an aging OL, to one in later years where we are reduced to imploring.

2012: LT Cordy Glenn. Solid 8 year Left Tackle. Taken by the Bills 9 picks later. Ever hear of that LB (sic!) Lavonte David? Konz busted. Can’t be perfect. But make no mistake, we WANTed Cordy Glenn because of the atrophy at OL.

2013: LB Alec Ogletree. Justin Pugh was not our choice because, remember, the Giants reached for him as a Tackle/Guard and we thought he was ok as a Guard. You can see the reactive desperation of Reese here. Fwiw, our prediction of a 10 yr Guard was incredibly accurate. Pugh is in his 9th season with Arizona and 110 starts. Ogletree was a very good LB for the Rams in the first half of his career before eroding. His 106 starts and 9 years in the NFL are nonetheless an affirmation that he delivered.

2014: LT Taylor Lewan*. He gets an asterisk because he went 1 pick ahead. Who would you rather have, Taylor Lewan or Odell Beckham? The crazy thing is that, as good as Beckham was, did he truly help this organization? The Giants hit the (generational) Lotto with a Round 1 WR and he still did not turn this franchise around. Btw, we were wrong about Donald and Martin (being so good), but note that we were willing to trade up 1 spot for Lewan. And for the Giants, Lewan would have been the best LONG TERM team-building answer. 3 time Probowler, 95 starts.

2015: LT Ereck Flowers. When you’re wrong, you’re wrong. But if we cherry picked all of our good stuff and omitted the bad, how reliable or credible would that record be? Wonder’s eval was incorrect (although he believes he was not coached up properly, with some of that perhaps vindicated in Flowers becoming a serviceable Guard in Washington). We take our lumps here though, we got it wrong.

2016: LT Laremy Tunsil. So many mistakes by Reese and this organization. Jerry Reese chose Eli Apple instead. And he lost his job because of this massive ginormous travesty. Tunsil? Franchise Left Tackle. He went to the Pro Bowl twice AFTER being traded to the Houston Texans for massive trade booty. Note we take Tunsil even after Flowers was taken in 2015. WE DO NOT CARE. OFFENSIVE LINE. OR SENTENCE YOURSELF TO A DECADE OF SH**.

2017: LB Reuben Foster. Domestic violence charge. Torn ACL after promising rookie season. BUST. FYI, we liked the talent of Engram but hated the “toys” over “boys” selection because Engram was not a blocking TE.

The Reuben Foster pick is a classic example of why you have to account for all of what you say, when you say it. This is an honest verification of every draft, how it unfolds. If someone is sharing only their hits without showing you their misses, it is meaningless cherry-picking. How do you think Bernie Madoff was so perfect year after year, decade after decade? Because he wasn’t. The misses validate the track record. We have verified our drafting track record before. How many draft analysts show you their hits AND misses?  

2018: NOT RUNNING BACK. Apologies for any excess arrogance, but this might be one of the greatest tweets of all time. Barkley is still at Penn State. We have zero clue exactly where the Giants will be drafting in November of 2017 for the April 2018 Draft. AND DAVE GETTLEMAN IS NOT EVEN THE GIANTS GM FOR ANOTHER MONTH. The Easter Bunny is a better selection at 1.02 overall than a RB, and I do not care that we would have taken Darnold or Traded Down. Slam dunk perfect draft tweet 5 months before the draft.

2019: EDGE Josh Allen. There was no Offensive Lineman to pick at 1.06, so we saw the player and the need at EDGE. What did the Giants do? They overdrafted Daniel Jones. See the previous post for nailing that one too. Two and a half years later, Mark Schlereth gave the same reasoning we gave on Draft night for why the Jones pick was flawed. Back to Allen, JAC took Allen 1 pick later at 1.07. 2019 All Rookie Team, 2019 Pro Bowl, hurt in 2020, 2021 AFC Defensive Player of the Week in Week 9. He is on a garbage team in a garbage market, but he is a Football Player.

2020: Trade down slightly and take Wirfs, Becton, Thomas, or Wills. I am happy the Giants got a very good player in Andrew Thomas. Our first choice was to trade down a little bit and take any of the four terrific Tackles to maximize the value. That Wirfs was taken at 1.13 should be a reminder of how you win Super Bowls. Incredible value. Oh Btw, not for nothing, but Ezra Cleveland was taken at 2.58 by Minnesota and has been a Starter every game this season at Guard. Staple.

2021: Round 1 Trade Down. Gettleman nailed this. And so did we. UltimateNYG Draft Analyst Wonder nailed this so badly, asking to trade down with Chicago at 1.20 weeks ahead of the Draft.

2021: C Creed Humphrey in Round 2. So we finally get to the reason why we posted, Center Creed Humphrey. We won’t waste anymore space with our opinion of NOT taking Wide Receiver (Toney or anyone else) in Round 1. LT Darrisaw would have been where we would have gone. But let’s move on to Round 2. The Giants had the 10th pick (2.42, Twitter typo), and traded down 8 spots to 2.50. Jenkins (taken 2.39) was now gone. The order above was still applicable…

Okay, okay, they took EDGE Ojulari, and we were very very happy. Our #2 preference. But look who was the #1 preference. Center Creed Humphrey. He ended up being taken at 2.63 by the KC Chiefs, 13 picks later, and in his rookie season he is already a star. Imagine what he would have done to the Offensive Line, with Thomas coming into his own at Left Tackle and Creed Humphrey DOMINATING (yes, DOMINATING) at Center?! Why do you think we were so high on Humphrey, willing to take him as a backup, not great value, at the tail end of Round 1?

Humphrey has given up 1 sack his entire rookie season, playing nearly every play for the Chiefs, 979 snaps. Forget just going to the Pro Bowl. He is on track to be ALL-PRO as a rookie. That is right, Center Creed Humphrey is one of the best Centers in all of Football as a rookie. Pro Football Focus has him as the #1 Center in the entire NFL. He grades out a full 6 points ahead of Jason Kelce of PHI and Corey Linsley of LAC, who are in second and third overall. Humphrey is an absolute mauler in the Run Game, and his Pass Blocking is excellent. What do you think this guy is going to look like when the game slows down even further for him? Ridiculous. Center is one of the most important positions in the game. NFL GMs are still under-rating what a Guard and Center can do for your team. He is a big part of KC’s resurgence in the second half of the season. And according to Joe Buck, Humphrey is already the Leader of the KC Offensive Line. That’s right, the line that protects Patrick Mahomes.

What is the message here? That we are always right? NO! We are not always right. In the last 11 drafts we have gotten it right most of the time, with 9 correct and only 2 misses. The message is that you prioritize OL and the players are there. If you are ill watching QB Justin Herbert while Gettleman overdrafted Jones, you need to get even more ill watching Creed Humphrey as a fixture of the Chiefs for the next 10 years. It is not a pipe dream to get these kinds of players. It is a pipe dream when you have lousy GMs who think that Offensive Line was not there in the 2021 draft, despite their efforts to “try” to add. That’s who Creed Humphrey is. The guy who wrestled in High School and was dominant at Oklahoma. The guy who is dominating as a rookie in the NFL. The guy that Gettleman (… Chris Mara?) said wasn’t there for the Giants and who we said was. It is time for the next Giants GM to seriously prioritize OL or else we are in for another 10 years of wandering in the desert.

Giant Turkey

Time to catch up on the NY Giants, comment on what it all means and where the team is headed.

1) Garrett. The big news this week was the firing of Jason Garrett. Garrett is a good guy, but a weak Coordinator. His schemes are archaic and ineffective. I have mentioned this in the past- follow Dan Schneier on Twitter. He practically makes any daily commentary unnecessary, leaving me to just tend to bigger picture focus. Dan has been chronicling the deficiencies in Garrett’s offense since last season, and we can’t say we are surprised at all. The NFL’s version of the Medusa is here on one play reviewed by another analyst, Dan Orlovsky. It cannot be unseen. Warning, you may turn to stone if you look at it:

2) The First Ten Games. The Garrett exit is part of larger dominoes shaping up. We have to take a step back; before we get to the season’s end housecleaning, let’s get a sense of the Giants final record for 2021. Earlier this year, we projected that the Giants would finish the tough part of the schedule (which ended Monday night with a loss to TB) at anywhere from 0-10 to 2-8. They finished 3-7. Ahha, an uptick?! Not in the slightest. Let’s review the past schedule and balance each Win/Loss versus a true assessment of what each opponent represented.

Loss to Denver. At 5-5, they are the mediocrity of the NFL. Denver has beaten NYG, NYJ, JAC, WAS, and a Dallas team that did not show up. They lost to the more credible opponents.

Loss to WAS. At 4-6, another garbage team at 2-6 who has now begun to play a little better, beating TB and CAR. Thankfully the Giants do not face WAS again right now (they play them the last game of the season), or else they would probably lose.

Loss to ATL. This was the season crusher. Atlanta is extremely similar to the Giants. They feed off the dregs and have zero chance against competent teams. Who has this 4-6 team beaten? NYG, WAS, NYJ and NO. Aah, yes, New Orleans. We get to talk about them next.

Win vs NO. I did not see this one coming, but it fits neatly into the weak narrative. The Saints are this year’s enigma. Even inside that game, it was an enigma. How does a 21-10 lead with 9 minutes left in the game evaporate against a garbage team like the Giants? To be fair to the Giants, this was the one game all season their OL pass protected. OL narrative, anyone?! The Saints made 4 mistakes to hand the game to the Giants. (Hey, it happens with garbage teams, as the Giants handed the game to WAS and ATL in the prior 2 weeks.) First, they went into the Prevent Offense. Second, when they could not get pressure on Jones, they did not mix up their fronts and confuse the easily befuddled Giants OL. Third, and this one blew my mind, the single greatest RB pass threat out of the backfield, Alvin Kamara, had zero receptions (and 0-1(?) targets)…. against a Defense that hasn’t stopped TEs and RBs since Antonio Pierce. Oh, and did I mention that Crowder (as well as IR Martinez) were out? Fourth, and last, the Giants were not running the ball well for most of the game. 2 of their 20 carries generated half their yardage (including a Jones run for 20 yds)…. yet the Saints were biting on play action. The Saints are now hobbled by injuries and the lowly Falcons beat them. At 5-6, they are good enough to win and bad enough to lose at any moment. (The Thursday night 31-6 pasting by BUF is part of this understanding that the Giants win was against a team in transition post Brees.) Fitting that the Giants game ended off of a coin toss in Overtime.

Losses to DAL, LAR and TB. These teams are 7-4, 7-3 and 7-3. They are the types of teams you measure your competitiveness against. The Giants got shellacked by each one of them, 44-20, 38-11, and 30-10. And the scores of each one of these games weren’t as close as the blowouts each game represented. Consider that it was 38-3 before 8 points of garbage time vs the Rams. Or that it took a muff by Mike Evans plus a Tackle eligible for the final score not to be 30-3 vs the Bucs. These are the games that remind you why the Giants are in need of some serious retooling.

Wins vs CAR & LVR. The victories against CAR and LVR are more a statement about the NFL than the Giants. At 5-6 and 6-5 respectively, these teams are part of what I call the soft underbelly of the NFL. The injury to Christian McCaffrey and the dysfunction of the Raiders are a metaphor (along with the uncompetitiveness of the Giants) for massive mediocrity. Carolina was a good football team to start the year. McCaffrey went down, and the team suffered. After limited action in his first game back, his second game back together with Kyler Murray’s absence and a new QB enabled a win by Carolina vs AZ. So the Giants were fortunate to play the Panthers when they played them. The Raiders game would have been a loss without the stellar play of Xavier McKinney.

Loss to KC. The Giants battled in this game. The Chiefs were a weak team at 3-4. The Giants game jump-started a 4 game winning streak for KC. Do not let their 7-4 record fool you. They are sloppy and heavily penalized. Kelce is busy dropping balls. Mahomes is throwing INTs. The Offensive tackles have not recovered from the injuries and offseason bloodletting. KC was fortunate to miss Aaron Rodgers (Covid) and their best performance may have been last Sunday vs DAL. The Giants squandered an opportunity to beat KC, a la WAS and ATL. Sound familiar? A Jones INT giftwraps a KC TD. Crazy personal foul penalties. Graham had a good defensive gameplan with 2 deep safeties but the Giants offense could not finish.

3) Xavier McKinney. McKinney is a bright spot (along with Quincy Roche) in an otherwise forgettable season. This is really McKinney’s first season as a pro, having lost the vast majority of 2020 to injury. Logan Ryan, a 9 year veteran with 2 rings from his days with the Patriots, says “the sky is the limit” for McKinney. High praise. Ryan continues…

“He’s a really good player. He’s a smart player. He works hard. He’s productive because he’s good at finding the ball in the air. The good thing about Xavier is he had a ton of success in college, obviously, and he came from a program that’s used to that. He’s able to come to work each and every day and he doesn’t seem like he’s acting any differently with the success. He seems like it’s what he expects of himself and what we expect of him. He’s playing well beyond his years, and that’s what we expect him to do.”

4) Giants D. When I am wrong, I admit it. I believed the Giants would have a Top 5 defense this season. They rank 26th. Woof. What happened? (1) The Giants are playing a lot of soft zone. This worked against Mahomes vertical attack but others were comfortable going underneath. Note how Brady the master was patient, going underneath and then went vertical as soon as Graham went with 1 high safety. Good QBs and good teams make the adjustments.(2) Bradberry went from being a shutdown corner to (at times) an invisible liability. Against TB, one play summed it up, where he could not make a tackle when he had his arms wrapped around the ball carrier, and the play went from no gain to a ~10 yard gain. His dominant play last year is simply not there this year. My best guess is he’s playing with an injury that is compromising his play. If you have another explanation for how a player goes from terrific to mediocre in one season, I’m all ears. (3) The preseason loss of Martinez was bigger than I thought. (4) Leonard Williams got paid and now he is back to what we knew he was all along- a solid interior DL who can make some “Secondary” sacks but is certainly not worth trading picks for, tagging, or 3 years/$63MM. Even so, his production has fallen off worse than I (or most) expected. (5) The Edge pass rush impact from Carter, Ximines and Ojulari has been mostly crickets. Ojulari has been active, with 5.5 sacks, yet most of this has come against weaker competition, putting more emphasis on the feast-famine of the NFL’s soft underbelly. He’s a rookie, so it is fine, as he is exactly where he needs to be. But the 2021 Edge pass rush is simply not there, especially against the better opponents. Rookie Quincy Roche had a key sack to end the game vs the Raiders. This is how you win games. Without pressure, you lose games. For the Giants, it is more about losing.

5) Daniel Jones’ 3rd year. This is a hot button for many fans. Franchise QB? Or not? Everyone can agree that the lack of an Offensive line and a credible Coordinator are not helping Jones. But these things merely amplify weaknesses in ball protection and (lack of) pocket poise. We see Jones’ warts. The only time this season he credibly led a 4th Quarter comeback was against the Saints when he had requisite protection. Re the problem with pocket poise, Orlovsky is a little more blunt with his choice of words.

I am not so fast to jettison Jones. I have two reasons why. The first is to nuke the OL with 4 picks in Round 1, Round 1, Round 2 and Round 3 of next year’s Draft, assuming the requisite talent is there. (Side note: the next GM will use 2 of those 4 picks on OL and congratulate himself.) The second reason is that I’d rather have these young OL players hammer Jones with rookie mistakes than turn my next QB into David Carr. Essentially I want to develop my OL before drafting the next QB. Maybe, small maybe, Jones looks good enough with a terrific Coordinator and consistent credible protection. If not, then the OL is ready to plug in a QB in the 2023 or 2024 Draft.

6) Overdrafting. It is worth another visit to the concept of what we mean by overdrafting. Every player has a perceived AND projected worth. Regulars to this NY Giants blog know that we said on Draft day in 2019 that Daniel Jones was overdrafted.

Overdrafting means taking a decent player much sooner than he should be taken. It is as much about squandering draft resources as it is in not getting an impact player. The reason I am coming back to this point is that Mark Schlereth brings up a dynamic here which colors the error from Gettleman coveting Jones.

You have to have a mindset that you are going to walk away from a player if you cannot get him where he belongs. There are too many answers (other good players) and too many landmines (overdrafting, busts) in the draft. Gettleman fails to incorporate this into his thinking, believing he is all-knowing. Hence Barkley full bloom love in 2018, Jones overdrafted in 2019, the Baker trade up into Round 1 to take a player with a serious red flag (work ethic, nothing directly to do with why he was cut, but why yet another R1 pick underperformed from Day 1), and Thomas the first of 4 consensus elite OL picks taken (significant value squandered). Schlereth’s 50 second dismantling of the Jones selection is as simple as it is true. It’s one of many reasons why Gettleman’s decisions have failed the Giants. Remarkably, if that one move would have worked, it would have saved the Giants and Gettleman. It did not, and fittingly he will not last as the Giants GM.

7) The Remaining 7 Games. 2 PHL, WAS, DAL, MIA, CHI and LAC. I can see the Giants going anywhere from 0-7 to 4-3, hence finishing anywhere from 3-14 to 7-10. Let’s assume the best outcome, splitting the remaining 4 divisional contests and beating MIA + CHI. How does Mara respond to 7-10? We know how he will respond to 5-12 or less. The point here is that 7-10 is the same as 3-14. What difference does it make if you can cobble together 7 garbage wins or 3 garbage wins? Who cares if you can beat MIA? Or split with WAS? Yes, improvement will always be welcome in the remaining portion of 2021. We want to see the Giants develop younger players like Ojulari, Roche, Thomas and McKinney. Many others will not survive a new GM and Head Coach.

8) Decisions vs Outcomes. Suppose someone gives you the following proposition: we flip a coin and if it lands heads I pay you $60 and if it lands tails, you pay me $40. Do you do the coin flip? Yes, all day long. Each flip has a net positive expected value of 0.5*($60) + 0.5(-$40) = +$10. Every time you flip the coin, it’s like someone is handing you a net $10 bill. Now if you flip the coin once, and it comes out tails and you lose, was the decision to flip a bad one? NO! It’s a mistake to make a determination on the decision to flip the coin based on any one outcome.

This framework of Decisions vs Outcomes applies directly to individual Draft decisions. If the decision is structurally flawed (where the attributes are net negative relative to other choices), then the Draft decision is incorrect. And vice versa. It doesn’t matter that Jones is a HOFer or a bust. That’s the outcome. Both possibilities existed on Draft Day and both possibilities still exist (although both extreme outcomes are less likely). Gettleman will be judged on the outcomes of ALL the decisions he has made, which sum to the aggregate performance on the field. So when we see (a) win now in 2018 (b) Barkley’s diminished impact (c) Daniel Jones’s imperfections (d) DeAndre Baker’s trade up & bust (e) inability to effectively prioritize Offensive Line and (f) win now in 2021, it sums to 18-40. Those structurally flawed decisions yielded a slew of negative outcomes, which collectively have doomed the Giants. Should it really matter whether the Giants finish 3-14 or 7-10? Does either outcome imply a more or less favorable assignment to Gettleman’s decisions which led to this state of the franchise? We urged Gettleman’s release after Year 2. We have not seen anything to change that opinion. In fact, the best decision of Gettleman’s tenure, trading down from 1.11 to 1.20, was asterisked by the razor thin luck(!) of Philadelphia trading ahead for Smith. If you have to ask whether we care about the outcome of Smith’s career, then you need to reread the section.

9) John Mara. I have this fantasy. I want to see Mara come into the end of season Press Conference and say this: “This past season is one of great disappointment for the organization, the fans, and ownership. I hold myself completely responsible for everything that has happened. I hired Dave Gettleman. I approved the head coach hiring. My administration suggested Garrett (source: Raanan). I said in no uncertain terms that 2021 would need results, especially after we emptied the tank and went aggressively through Free Agency. We failed on all levels. Having had one of the worst records in the NFL since 2017, that singularly must be on me. No one else. I keep going inside the Giants family for answers, whether that is for the GM search committee or the GM himself. This approach has failed. We can no longer do that. Loyalty is a cornerstone of this organization. Successive failure borne from loyalty means I am serving no ones’ best interests by remaining loyal. It is now obvious to me that I have lengthened this process considerably by staying within these walls. We must look beyond. Hence, I am obtaining the assistance of the NFL in setting up a GM search. To the organization, the Tisches, the fans, we must do better and I take full responsibility for a decade of mostly uncompetitive football.”

And then I woke up.

Who am I kidding? Do I really think Mara miraculously finds enlightenment and figures out that he is the ultimate source of this franchise’s dysfunction? We’re thinking logically here, that one need only look in the mirror to find the answer to having the worst record in the NFL since 2017. I give Mara’s odds of taking full responsibility + searching COMPLETELY outside the organization for a new GM about a 10% chance. If you believe that Gettleman, Barnes, Chris Mara, and even the dated Rolodex of Ernie Accorsi need to be sent into retirement/packing for the good of the franchise (which will be the net result when a GM from outside the organization clears out the deadwood), maybe sending a copy of this post to 1925 Giants Drive E Rutherford 07073 can shake that tree. But I wouldn’t waste your time. Mara knows better than the fans. Until these football addicts stop showing up at games and hurt him in the wallet (or keep embarrassing him like they did at the 2011 Super Bowl championship 10 yr anniversary celebration), he’s never going to figure it out. This morning we have a report that the Giants will try to stay within the Patriots system for Judge’s sake. NO! This is the same backward thinking. This organization desperately needs a fresh set of eyes, so why would you limit it to 2 trees (NYG + NE)? You need to look everywhere. The next GM needs to be completely detached from Judge to make an objective decision about the HC’s future. In fact, if I’m a GM candidate interviewing for the Giants job and they put ANY strings on the hire (ie protecting Judge, Chris Mara, or anyone else in the organization), I politely walk away. That’s a job set up for failure. This report, if true, would only confirm the level of dysfunction at 1925.