It was for Phil Simms, and he thinks it will be for another franchise quarterback of the Giants -- Eli Manning.
Simms, who held most of the franchise’s passing records until Manning passed them in recent years, compared his positive experience of learning a new offense as a veteran to what Manning is currently going through with new offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo.
"I learned a new system in my 15th year, and it was awesome," Simms told Newsday’s Bob Glauber. "It will be for Eli like it was for me. You have to win the new coach over. He's going to have to do things faster than everybody else [on the team], and he's going to have to prove himself all over again."
In 1993, Dan Reeves took over as head coach of the Giants, and Simms went on to make the Pro Bowl that year. It turned out to be the quarterback’s final season, but it was his first selection since making the Pro Bowl nearly a decade earlier in 1985.
Now Manning, who is embarking on his 11th NFL season, will try to rebound from a down year in a new offense.
"I don't think it's going to be tough for him," Simms said. "It's going to be new information, a new way to do things, but there will be a lot of the same plays that every offense runs, and there will be a new voice telling him and different ways of running those plays."
That voice will be McAdoo's, who brings over a West Coast offense after the retirement of former offensive coordinator Kevin Gilbride.
"I would think this will make it easier on Eli because it will be a more quarterback-friendly system," Simms said. "I have great respect for Kevin Gilbride winning two Super Bowls. He was worried about hitting four of those big passes every game, and I love that about the Giants' offense. It wasn't 17 screens every game.
"But I would think the West Coast offense and some of the thinking will help the quarterback," he said. "It's not always putting the pressure on the quarterback, which I am a big believer of in today's game. Give the quarterback 50 percent of his completions as 'gimmies.' There are other times you want to make those four or five special throws."