The New York Giants are heading in a new and exciting direction under the leadership of freshman general manager Joe Schoen and his handpicked head coach, Brian Daboll. Former Giants defender Eli Manning confirmed just as much, recently telling the NFL Network that “the atmosphere has changed” around the team’s facility.
While many Giants fans are celebrating the work Schoen and Daboll have done so far, there’s one important thing they could never have accomplished without the help of former GM Dave Gettleman. The Athletic’s Dan Duggan recently wrote about Gettleman’s parting “gift” when tasked with determining the team’s best move in 2022.
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Here’s what Duggan wrote (emphasis added):
General Manager Joe Schoen inherited a mess, but a gift from predecessor Dave Gettleman was two picks in the top seven of this year’s draft. After a thrifty freelance agency, Schoen had to close the manuscript to begin rebuilding the Giants. Time will tell the 5th pick Kayvon Thibodeaux and 7th pick Evan Neal, but getting the two players into the high-profile slots seen in the conversation for the #1 pick is a good start for the new GM. .
Gettleman may not be around to exercise the pick, but he did get what turned out to be the seventh overall pick in this year’s NFL Draft (via a trade with the Chicago Bears). The new mode used that pick to pick Alabama’s offensive opponent Evan Neal, after picking Oregon linebacker Kayvon Thibodeaux with the fifth overall pick.
Neal and Thibodeaux project to become franchise platforms on opposite sides of the ball. If it weren’t for Gettleman’s trade with the Bears, chances are the Giants wouldn’t have either of those players on the roster right now.
The Giants’ reasons aside from their first two draft selections
When you look back at the season as a whole, you realize how much those first two picks meant a lot. Perhaps whether wide-ending Wan’Dale Robinson or Daniel Bellinger could perform well as rookies, the rest of the Giants’ draft class after Round 1 was not widely applauded by the pundits.
Before that, the flashiest free agent addition the Giants could buy was former Indianapolis Colts guard Mark Glowinski, who joined the team on a three-year, $18 million deal. The rest of their season was spent freeing up limited space with moves like the launch of full-back James Bradberry (who later signed with the Philadelphia Eagles).
While there have been commercial rumors surrounding star players, including Kadarius Toney and Saquon Barkley, the Giants have yet to make a deal with Schoen (aside from moving up or down in the draft).
Gettleman may get some credit for giving Schoen and Company an extra pick in the first round, but the long scattering of his previous mistakes was a big reason why the first season of the game. The new level is quite quiet apart from the Thibodeaux and Neal options.
How Gettleman could have an extra (or two) laugh
The Giants still have plenty of players on their roster who have been included in Gettleman’s track. The two biggest are midfielder Daniel Jones and defender Saquon Barkley. Jones was the sixth overall pick in the 2019 NFL Draft, and the Giants picked Barkley with the second overall pick the year before.
Looking back at these choices, it’s easy to criticize them. Jones has struggled to hold the franchise and recently turned down his fifth-year pick, while Barkley has been bankrupt and largely ineffective since his stellar rookie year.
If either player can cement his position with the new regimen and coaching staff this season, Gettleman will have one last chance to say, “I told you so.” Otherwise, there won’t be many notable Gettleman players left on the roster by this time next year.
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https://heavy.com/sports/new-york-giants/dave-gettleman-gift-led-to-giants-best-offseason-move/ Dave Gettleman ‘The Gift’ Leads to Giants Best Move of the Season