SNY.com– “The Giants didn’t just rebuild their team last season, they also helped rebuild Steve Spagnuolo’s career.
The popular defensive coordinator, whose prior two years on the job were historically bad (with the Giants in 2015 and the Saints in 2012), earned rave reviews for the way he helped revive the Giants’ defense last season. And as a result, the Giants gave him a two-year contract extension, according to a league source, to ensure he’d be back for more.
That move — first reported by ESPN — was really a foregone conclusion. “Spags” didn’t even receive a nibble in the latest round of head coaching searches, so his job options were limited even though his defense went from 32nd in the league last season to 10th overall this season as the Giants allowed the second-fewest points in the league.”
Resigning the man who helped steer what was one of the most putrid last place defense in 2015 into the top ten in 2016 will be one of the easier decisions Giants make this off-season.
The born and raised Boston native with a solid thick accent reminiscent of Casey Affleck’s role in Manchester by the Sea (A+ movie, would recommend, 10/10-IGN) will be tasked with now keeping this defense at the top. While the offense had its obvious struggles last year (averaging a putrid 19.4 per game in 2016) it’s the Giants defense that found its identity as one of the best in the league.
While Spags is a great defensive coordinator for the Giants to have he still isn’t the type of coordinator who can do a lot with little talent, shown by the massive struggles with the 2015 defense in Spags 1st year back from the 07 Super Bowl team. While not saying it’s a knock on Spags, obviously having the defensive free agent splurge last offseason will help just about any defensive coordinator, it just shows that the Giants need to do everything they can to keep this defense together in the small Super Bowl window they have right now.
JPP is obviously the top priority, with Hankins and DRC following behind. JPP is reportedly seeking around a Olivier Vernon like 5 year $85 million deal and knows he’ll have a big market for an athletic pass rusher like himself. Hankins won’t be that kind of money, he won’t even be Snacks type money (5 year $46 million) but is still a young defensive run stopper that knows other teams will be willing to pay up for. And with Cromartie finding resurgence in the slot role and having one of his best years in 2016, he will be a guy this defense wants to keep, not just on the field but for his off-field leadership as well.
There will be plenty of moves and decisions Giants will have to make this coming offseason that we will dive into down the road, but for now extending a coordinator who was able to not only resurrect last years defense but also get them to mesh together as well as they did is a no brainer first step for the road to Minnesota.